Sergey Tarasov -

Legal & General signs seven-year datacentre migration deal with IBM spin-off Kyndryl

Financial services giant L&G has enlisted the help of its long-standing technology partner to help accelerate the pace of its cloud-focused digital transformation plans

Legal & General (L&G) has signed a seven-year datacentre migration deal with IBM spin-off Kyndryl that is geared towards accelerating the financial services firm’s use of multi-cloud.

The deal marks a continuation of a long-standing technology tie-in between the two entities, dating back to 2010, with L&G now leaning on Kyndryl to oversee the movement of its IT systems to a new datacentre, with the aim of simplifying its IT architecture while reducing the company’s technical debt.

The contract is due to run until 31 March 2030, with L&G claiming the move will accelerate the pace of its cloud-focused digital transformation strategy, curb its carbon emissions and pave the way for greater use of public cloud services.

The hoped-for carbon emission reductions will be achieved in part by the datacentre migration portion of this project, according to Faith Taylor, vice-president and global sustainability officer at Kyndryl.

“This relationship will see Kyndryl move Legal & General’s services to a modern datacentre location to consume services in a more carbon-efficient way and reduce its environmental footprint,” she said.

“It is planned to be powered by 100% renewable energy aligning with Kyndryl and L&G’s sustainability commitments.”

Where the public cloud is concerned, L&G’s central IT function is already known to be a user of Amazon Web Services (AWS), helping the organisation’s various lines of business deploy their workloads in its public cloud environment if and when needed.

Hybrid cloud platform

The company’s existing use of public cloud services will be factored into this contract, the company confirmed, but it will also enable L&G to diversify its supplier mix through the roll-out of an on-premise hyper-converged infrastructure-enabling Microsoft Azure Stack hybrid cloud platform from Dell.

This setup will be closely coupled with Kyndryl’s zCloud mainframe offering, which L&G said will pave the way for “further public cloud migrations”.

Mark Hall, group chief technology officer at L&G, said this deal represents “strategic opportunities” for the two companies to build on their long-running technology partnership.

“[We’re] leveraging Kyndryl’s deep expertise and experience in providing secure, compliant and resilient compute, mainframe and cloud transformation services, alongside their knowledge of Legal & General,” he said. 

“Kyndryl has taken a strong one-team ethos to the program, underpinned by transparency and a great affinity to L&G’s unique culture and purpose.”

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Joe Taylor, managing partner at Kyndryl, said the focus of the partnership is on “collaborating as one team” and bringing “the very best talent” to help L&G deliver on its IT strategy.

“We are helping L&G accelerate the modernisation and simplification of [its] IT estate, generate cost efficiencies and reduce carbon emissions through migration to Azure Stack HCI at Kyndryl’s new strategic datacentre,” he said.

“The deal also includes mainframe optimisation projects, staff augmentation and the implementation of Kyndryl Bridge.”

Beyond this project, L&G has publicly spoken out in the past about its decision to diversify its own investment portfolio, by investing in digital infrastructure providers, including Harlow-based colocation firm Kao Data.

Discussing the decision in December 2021, Matteo Columbo, strategic private capital investment director at L&G, said: “Historically, the UK has been 75% in-house datacentres, with big corporates housing their own compute, and 25% professionalised third-party datacentres. It should be vice-versa, and that’s what we’re investing to do.”

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