Fanatical Support for AWS — A Mid-Year Update

As we welcome the second half of 2017, I wanted to take a few minutes to reflect on the journey Rackspace has been on with its transformational decision to support our customers on the Amazon Web Services (AWS) platform.

There have only been a few distinct periods in history that have driven deep impact catalyzed by large-scale technology innovation, and there is no question that we are entering a golden age of the next cloud-enabled industrial revolution. It is striking, in our conversations with customers, that companies of all sizes are driving aggressively forward to the next era of their businesses with technology and the cloud at the heart of their competitive differentiation ­­— these are now fundamental corporate strategy and board level considerations.

The rapid rise of cloud adoption on corporate agendas was clearly on display in the first half of the year as we worked with hundreds of companies and their CTOs, CIOs and directors of technology and infrastructure to transform their businesses using the power of the AWS platform. This ranged from small and medium-sized businesses such as Santikos Theatres, that is fully embracing the power of the AWS platform to digitize its online customer experience, to large-scale enterprises such as Six Flags, that is looking to create magical guest experiences at its theme parks through iterative product development and rapid innovation on the AWS platform.

Early in Q1, Gartner recognized Rackspace in the Leaders quadrant of “Magic Quadrant for Public Cloud Infrastructure Managed Service Providers, Worldwide.” As the newest player in the AWS managed services space, landing in the Leaders quadrant in less than two years (after launching our services) was a significant testament to the team’s hard work and dedication to our customers. We were also honored to be designated by AWS as a standard setting next-generation Managed Services Provider. A great way to start off the year!

Our team continued to dig deep in Q1 to build on our learnings from our evolving customer base in 2016 – to “meet” customers wherever they were on their respective journeys to the AWS cloud. As a result, in early Q2, we launched a suite of professional services for AWS to augment our leading managed services offering for AWS. This move has proven to be especially important as we’ve seen a steady increase in the number of larger SMBs, midmarket and enterprise companies looking for an end-to-end suite of services to make their journey to AWS a successful one.

Finally, in late Q2 2017, we inked an enhanced strategic partnership with AWS to bring the best of both companies to our customers — our joint product and service expertise, migration engineering and tooling efforts as well as joint professional services resourcing to serve the next wave of customers looking to leverage the AWS cloud.

Working with both new and existing Rackspace customers throughout 2016 and H1 2017 gave us a deep appreciation for the complexity of moving large customers from one platform to the next. The process requires a blend of deep practical knowledge on the AWS platform through our AWS colleagues, highly contextualized best practices from our Rackspace Solutions Architects (who have literally worked with and advised thousands of customers making the move to AWS), migration delivery by our Rackspace migration experts and highly user-friendly migration tooling to deliver a seamless migration and post migration experience.

As a result of this new partnership, AWS Professional Services personnel will also work beside our Rackers at our headquarters in San Antonio, and at on-site engagements at our customers’ offices when necessary. AWS will also be offering significant resources to support proof of concept projects and migrations that will allow customers to experience the benefits of the AWS platform, managed by Rackspace’s AWS-certified specialists. As a result of this agreement, our current and future customers are the ultimate beneficiaries — they get the deep linkage between AWS’ leading cloud platform and Rackspace’s industry leading and at-scale service expertise (we now have over 830 AWS certifications) on the AWS cloud.

Also in Q2 2017, Rackspace acquired Tricore Solutions, to provide up-the-stack and application management expertise and capabilities, specifically for Oracle and SAP platforms, to our Rackspace customers. We’re excited to leverage these new capabilities and serve a new wave of Fanatical Support for AWS customers that have enterprise application management use cases.

In addition to the above new capability announcements in H1, our Fanatical Support for AWS business continues to be the fastest growing business in Rackspace’s history — which is the direct result of our Rackers’ obsession to deliver consistent and fanatical experiences for our customers. We thank our customers that have brought us to this point — they are at the center of our mission!

We continue to be humbled by the hundreds of companies looking to launch over their previous technology frameworks and infrastructure and really embrace the latest capabilities in AWS’ tremendous portfolio of services. It is going to be a fascinating journey for each of them and we are honored to be a part of their transformation. Rackspace is always in our customers’ corner!

To learn more about Fanatical Support for AWS, please visit www.rackspace.com/aws

Prashanth Chandrasekar has over a decade of leadership and management experience across multiple functions in the technology sector. He is currently the Vice President and General Manager of the AWS business unit at Rackspace where he is responsible for full P&L, strategy, product and engineering, sales, channel, marketing, service delivery and operations Prior to joining Rackspace, Prashanth was Vice President at Barclays Investment Bank, focused on providing strategic and Mergers & Acquisitions advice for clients in the Technology, Media and Telecom industries. He was also an Engagement Manager at Capgemini Consulting and a Software Engineer at Texas Instruments and CA Technologies. Prashanth holds an MBA from the Harvard Business School, an M.Eng in Engineering Management from Cornell University and a B.S. in Computer Engineering (summa cum laude) from the University of Maine. Follow him on Twitter @pchandrasekar.

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