Mirantis Partners with UCloud, Looks Toward China

by Ostatic Staff - Oct. 29, 2015

This week is bringing a flood of announcements from the Tokyo OpenStack Summit. Mirantis, focused on OpenStack, and UCloud, China's largest independent public cloud provider, announced a joint venture to accelerate adoption of OpenStack as the leading open cloud infrastructure solution for finance, telecom, state-owned enterprises and large Internet businesses in China. The Shenzhen Stock Exchange is among a half dozen early customers of the new joint venture, called UMCloud.

"China and the United States are two countries where cloud computing is developing the fastest, spawning global brands and fostering enormous innovations in technology and business models," said Alex Freedland, president and co-founder of Mirantis. "UMCloud fully supports and embraces the Internet Plus initiative national policy and we see unlimited potential in OpenStack as a major cloud engine helping power future economic growth in China."

"As the world's number one Openstack pure-play vendor, Mirantis is the open cloud technology leader with deep and rich Openstack deployment success over many years in many different enterprise production environments," said Xinhua Ji, CEO of UCloud and CEO of the new joint venture with Mirantis, UMCloud. "As the largest independent public cloud service provider in China, UCloud deeply understands customer requirements for cloud computing in China. Our combined strength will allow UMCloud to become the foundational technology provider for China's Internet Plus Initiative, providing the most reliable, secured, and stable Openstack-powered cloud service to China enterprises."

China is the world's second-largest economy, and UCloud is an entrenched cloud-focused company there, so Mirantis gets a big foot in the door through its new partnership. Mirantis, of course, has helped to deliver OpenStack implementations to some of the world's largest cloud customers, including AT&T, Ericsson, Walmart, Wells Fargo and more.

Founded in 2012 by former Tencent executives, UCloud is the number one independent public cloud service provider in China, specializing in hosting and cloud services for clients in various industries such as e-commerce, gaming, mobile internet, and SaaS, among others. With data centers in China, Hong Kong and the United States, UCloud helps its Chinese clients support their operations globally. The company announced a $100 million Series C financing round this spring, with $160 million raised to date.

The China cloud market is vast and growing quickly, driven by government policy and unprecedented consumer and business demand. In 2014, China had more than 640 million internet users -- more than the next three countries combined (USA, India and Japan). In 2013, smartphone use in China exceeded 700 million units, and almost 530 million of these Chinese smartphone users accessed the internet from their mobile device. While still nascent, investment in cloud computing infrastructure in China is estimated by consultancy Bain & Company to be growing faster than overall IT spending and projected to reach $20 billion by 2020, a compound annual growth rate of 40% to 45%.

China has also declared cloud computing to be part of its national tech strategy.