IBM launches enterprise cloud marketplace, talks of “next major step” in portfolio

IBM has announced the launch of the IBM Cloud Marketplace, with Big Blue putting all its cloudy apps and software in one place in what the company calls “the next major step in IBM’s cloud leadership.”

The usual suspects are all there, from 100 SaaS apps, to the newly-launched PaaS developer offering BlueMix, to IaaS package SoftLayer. IBM has categorised each part of the marketplace appropriately – Biz, described as “enterprise-grade business apps to accelerate innovation” (SaaS), to Dev (PaaS) and Ops (IaaS).

Some might argue IBM is a little late to the party here, with Salesforce.com already established in the app store front, and other hyper-vendors such as HP more recently getting on board.

Yet this offering is an enterprise app store, but with a little extra on top. As Dominique Vernier, global IT architect for IBM cloud, explains in a blog post: “It is a real, single landing page for learning, trying and buying software and services from IBM and IBM Business Partners.”

“IBM Cloud Marketplace puts big data analytics, mobile, social, commerce, integration – the full power of IBM-as-a-Service and our ecosystem – at our clients’ fingertips to help them quickly deliver innovative services to their constituents,” roared Robert LeBlanc, SVP IBM software and cloud solutions in a statement.

It’s hard to disagree with the literature in this instance. Having all resources available in one place is a huge boon for IBM, and certainly represents the ‘next step’ in building its cloud arm up.

Indeed, Big Blue now sees itself as a cloud company first and foremost, announcing in March a total of $1bn (£597.6m) of resources and investments ploughed into cloud. This news comes amidst a series of job cuts – ‘resource actions’, in company speak – across various IBM plants, with the Alliance@IBM employee organisation frequently updating on the status of employees.

Last month CloudTech spoke at length with IBM UK&I cloud leader Doug Clark, who explained his thoughts that IBM’s portfolio was ‘absolutely industry-beating across almost every dimension’, adding: “I think our portfolio is broad enough and rich enough that there’s a little bit of something in there for everybody.”

IBM also announced new BlueMix services, adding more than 30 cloud services to help developers build apps in the cloud, as well as the first “BlueMix Garage”, an incubator, in conjunction with startups to speed up specific application delivery and development.

As chief exec Virginia Rometty spelled out in an open letter to investors following the company’s 2013 annual report: “IBM today is the leader in enterprise cloud.” And for Armonk, this is the logical next step in maintaining that aim.

Read more: IBM’s cloud strategy: Will it become the best in the business?

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