Alibaba Cloud’s Indonesia datacentre is open for business

The Chinese cloud supplier is pulling all stops to expand its Asia-Pacific footprint, including training local cloud professionals and nabbing notable customers – including one of Indonesia’s top e-commerce companies

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Alibaba Cloud has opened the doors to its first datacentre in Indonesia, underscoring the Chinese cloud service supplier’s growing footprint in the Asia-Pacific region.

With a vibrant startup ecosystem, a fast-growing e-commerce market and a large consumer base of over 260 million, Indonesia presents huge opportunities for hyperscale cloud providers eager to serve the needs of homegrown companies looking to expand across the sprawling archipelago and globally.

Alibaba Cloud said its local datacentre will offer a full cloud portfolio including compute, database, networking and security services, and help Indonesian businesses with low latency or data residency requirements to store and process data within the country.

It also singled out its MaxCompute big data platform that can store and process large amounts of structured data in the terabyte or even petabyte range, so businesses can quickly reap the benefits of data analytics and machine learning.

To help local businesses get up to speed with Alibaba Cloud, the supplier said it hopes to train 300 local cloud professionals and certify 100 of them through the Alibaba Cloud Certified Professional program within a year.

Alibaba Cloud said it already counts Indonesian internet companies such as Tokopedia, GTech Digital Asia, Dwidaya Tour and Yogrt as customers.

Tokopedia, one of the largest online marketplaces in Indonesia, currently runs over 20 core applications and various managed services on Alibaba Cloud. It is also using Alibaba Cloud’s AI services to glean insights from large datasets and improve customer experience.

Cultural and contextual advantages

In Southeast Asia, Alibaba has positioned itself as the only global cloud service supplier from Asia, and claims to have the cultural and contextual advantages to provide data intelligence and computing capabilities to customers in the region.

“Among global cloud top players, we are the only company originating from the East. By working extensively with China or Asia-based clients, we have a better understanding of their needs and more insightful knowledge of the China and Asia market,” an Alibaba spokesperson told Computer Weekly in 2017.

During its 2017 fiscal year, Alibaba Cloud grew the number of paying customers to 874,000, an increase of 70% from the previous year. Besides startups and SMEs, the company has also nabbed large customers in the energy, financial, healthcare, manufacturing, media and retail industries.

Read more about Alibaba in APAC

  • Alibaba Cloud has teamed up with Malaysia’s government to roll out an AI platform aimed at easing Kuala Lumpur’s notorious traffic congestion.
  • Alibaba is opening datacentres in India and Malaysia as part of ongoing efforts to ramp up its presence in the region.
  • Chinese cloud suppliers are only getting started in making themselves known to enterprise IT buyers in Southeast Asia.
  • Alibaba has set up a joint research facility at Singapore’s Nanyang Technological University to develop AI-based technologies.

Hong Kong-based travel retailer DFS, for instance, has migrated critical applications such as SAP to Alibaba Cloud’s Hong Kong datacentre using a hybrid cloud model.

In October 2017, Alibaba Cloud said it was on track to overtake US cloud behemoth Amazon Web Services as world’s top cloud supplier. The company’s confidence dovetails with that of a rising China whose companies have been investing aggressively around the world, driven by its Belt and Road initiative that aims to foster closer economic cooperation and connectivity between Asia and Europe.

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