Category Archives: Deloitte

Understanding the economics of the cloud – its more than just a money saver

Businessman drawing business planA recent survey from Spiceworks highlighted 93% of enterprise organizations are now using at least one cloud based service within their operations, but there does seem to be a general feeling within the community that the benefits are not clearly understood.

While most early adopters of such platforms, as well as other future tech, have focused on the performance capabilities which cloud can offer, the mainstream market believes the cloud is a cost reduction tool, a point which professional services giant Deloitte disagrees with.

“The image of the cloud projected by the market is sometimes that all forms of cloud are cheaper, but it is a question of using the right tool for the right job,” said Gwil Davies, Director & Cloud Lead in the EMEA IT Infrastructure at Deloitte. “What decision makers at these organizations need to realize is that the cloud is not necessarily cheaper.”

“I think it’s more important for organizations get a real understanding of how to use the cloud and perhaps not automatically assume that moving all of their current IT into cloud is going to be the cheaper solution.”

The concept of the cloud being a cheaper alternative to traditional IT is sometimes a case of a lack of understanding of the technology itself, but also the journey on which organizations need to undertake to ensure cloud computing is being used in an effective manner. Selecting a cloud provider is only a small facet of the cloud itself, a fact which can be under-appreciated by enterprise decision makers.

“Technology is a small part of the challenge, business transformation of the organization is key to the success of the cloud,” said Davies. “You have to be really clear on the why, the what and the how. Specifically you have to have a keen eye on value. Some of the most successful cloud implementation projects generate value in new ways. These decision makers have specifically identified where clear business value can be generated. If the answer is to reduce costs, the cloud is not always the right option.”

Speaking at Cloud World Expo, Davies highlighted that a successful journey to the cloud is not one which focuses on reducing CAPEX and OPEX throughout the organization, but identifies where value can be achieved through a cloud-enabled business. Identifying where the value is, but also monitoring the progress of the project can be the difference between effective investment and throwing money away.

“There are sometimes surprises – and most organisations will need to invest in some base capabilities, before a migration of systems into the cloud can begin,” said Davies. “The business case needs to be defined around what the value of the transition is to the business – huge benefits can be realised, and often it’s not just about reducing the current cost of your IT systems.”

One conclusion which can be drawn from the aforementioned survey as well as others, is the concept of cloud computing has penetrated into the mainstream market. But the question as to whether the benefits of scalability, compute power, agility, flexibility etc. have been effectively received is less clear.

“It varies very widely (whether benefits beyond cost reduction are understood), as customers are in different stages of their cloud journey,” said Davies. “In my opinion, the cloud as a technology is one of the most transformative opportunities available to enterprise organizations in recent years. The cloud is unlocking a huge amount of value throughout the organization, which wouldn’t have been possible even two years ago. There is a huge potential to reach new customers, create new opportunities and experiences, as well as become more competitive in the market place.

Different organizations are in different places though. The starting point for organizations, who are at the investigating the cloud, and haven’t identified what the cloud means to the wider business, is mostly cost saving.”

Deloitte and Cloudera create compliance service in the cloud

CloudProfessional service company Deloitte and cloud operator Cloudera have launched a jointly created cloud service that helps financial services people meet their compliance obligations more easily. It aims to specifically ease the workload created by the supervisory rules of the capital analysis and review (CCAR) process.

The Deloitte CCAR service aims to help companies cope with the masses of data needed to stress test financial products as regulations constantly change. Annual CCAR supervisory rules regularly specify new scenarios and datasets to be used in credit risk, liquidity risk, market risk, pre-provision net revenue (PPNR) and capital management models.

The cost and time involved in constantly processing these complicated variables, in order to generate the forecasted stress estimates, is escalating as the number of quarterly and yearly models multiples, according to Deloitte.

The Deloitte-designed solution includes accelerators to streamline data selection, data quality, variables conversion, data ingestion and management and to convert or migrate models to the SAS DS2 or Apache Spark or Python programming languages.

Cloudera was approached to use its expertise in Apache Hadoop open source software frameworks in order to create the visualization and dashboard tools promised in the system. The tools are designed to interact with the results of stress tests so they can quickly identify trends and potential sources of risk.

Deloitte built accelerators in Spark that cater for a wide variety of contingencies, which cuts the cost and risk of migrating existing CCAR models into an open source environment at first and into  the SAS DS2 once it is released.

“The current regulatory environment that our clients face is more complex than at any time in history,” said Ashish Verma, director at Deloitte Consulting LLP. “This complexity in regulation has led to complexity in data management, making compliance very costly with little benefit to the business.”

Cloudera has created a ‘cost effective solution’ to the problems faced by clients, said Verma, “storing this data within Cloudera Enterprise means companies can perform additional non-compliance analysis and potentially develop a deeper understanding of their businesses.”

Huawei, partners push cloud transformation for financial IT

He: Concentrating on core competencies

He: Concentrating on core competencies

As part of its expansion into IT services and the financial services markets, Chinese telecoms giant Huawei has partnered with 11 banking IT solution providers to establish an open platform ecosystem for the finance industry, reports Banking Technology.

The collaboration was announced during Huawei’s Global Financial Services Industry Summit in Beijing last week. The launch partners are Accenture (China), Beijing Advanced Digital Technology, Beijing Yucheng Technologies, Beiming Software, DHC Software, Deloitte Business Advisory Services, Digital China System Integration Service, First Data, Infosys Technologies, Micro Focus, and Worldline Technologies.

David He, president of marketing and solution sales at Huawei’s Enterprise Business Group, that that Huawei will focus on its core skills as a hardware platform provider, based around its BDII – Business-Driven ICT Infrastructure – approach.

“The new ecosystem is designed to address the IT transformation needs of financial organisations [and] promotes BDII within the financial industry by enabling our partners to focus on their core competencies,” said He. “For example, consulting firms, application vendors, and system integrators will be able to leverage their in-depth understanding and practical experience around industry applications, while Huawei, as a hardware platform provider, will focus on ICT infrastructure.”

Collaboration was one of the main themes of the event. During a keynote presentation, He said that collaboration and joint innovation between banks and vendors is essential to overcome the challenges faced by the financial services industry as it faces the dual threat of new digital and mobile technologies being harnessed by new, agile competitors.

The company also jointly published a white paper, Transformation and Reconstruction of Banks in the Digital Era, with Deloitte. In it, the two companies highlighted the need for banks to implement a digitalisation strategy supplemented by powerful and supportive systems, and IT capability construction.

The white paper argues a key component of the strategy is the transformation of cloud architecture, which enables banks to improve analysis efficiency, lower the cost of operations and innovation, and enhance data storage and disaster preparedness capabilities. In addition, big data strategies enable banks to quickly respond to real-time customer demands by analysing massive volumes of customer data. The transformation from multi-channel to omni-channel systems will also help banks provide consistent and seamless customer experiences.

By launching the open platform ecosystem for the finance industry, Huawei and its partners hope to help financial institutions migrate from closed to open IT architectures and enable enhanced customer experience and convenient service innovations in a safe and reliable operating environment.

As part of the collaboration, Huawei is working with other members of the ecosystem to launch a range of open platform-based solutions for the finance industry, including an online banking cloud (based on private cloud architecture for finance), a credit loan cloud, a direct banking cloud, a micro-and-small-loan service cloud, a core account cloud, a credit card core application cloud, as well as mobile teller and home banking capabilities. These solutions have helped companies including the Spanish Bolsas y Mercados Españoles exchange build a cloud-based equity trading system.

“Huawei facilitates IT architecture transformation within the finance industry by providing highly reliable x86 cluster systems to support core transaction systems, in addition to cloud architecture for finance that supports the transformation of the business and processes of banks,” said Wang Hongfeng, general manager, finance solutions, in Huawei’s EBG.. “Huawei also provides platform resources support through our open labs, innovation centres, authentication centres, and secondary development and remote support. Through cross-practice cooperation, Huawei hopes to speed up the evolution toward open platform architecture in the financial services industry.”

Verizon tries to woo CSOs with managed security offering

Verizon is boosting its managed security practice

Verizon is boosting its managed security practice

Verizon is throwing its hat into the managed security services ring this week, launching a managed cybersecurity and incident monitoring service targeted at large enterprises.

The Unified Security Services includes a pre-configured set of features managed by Verizon directly and designed to protect the network edge.

Verizon said it will provide service event monitoring, device alerting and 24/7 security support as well as patch management as part of the suite.

“With Unified Security Services, we have bundled together technology, human expertise and deployment services into one convenient offering,” said Mike Denning, vice president of Global Security at Verizon Enterprise Solutions.

“This solution is aimed at helping organizations — with little to no internal staff — better safeguard their networks, without adding complexity or more resources to their IT teams,” he said.

The suite will initially be rolled out in the US with plans to offer hosted versions globally in 2016.

The launch would suggest its partnership with Deloitte, announced in the Spring, is bearing fruit. In April the companies announced a partnership to deliver a comprehensive set of cybersecurity and risk-management solutions to enterprises.

As part of that deal Verizon said it would leverage its experience in digital forensics and managed services and Deloitte its cyber risk advisory services to deliver end-to-end incident response services.

IBM, Deloitte to jointly develop risk management, compliance solutions

IBM and Deloitte are partnering to use big data for compliance in financial services

IBM and Deloitte are partnering to use big data for compliance in financial services

IBM and Deloitte are partnering to develop risk management and compliance solutions for the financial services sector, the companies said this week.

The partnership will see Deloitte offer up its financial services and risk management consulting expertise to help IBM develop a range of cloud-based risk management services that combine the technology firm’s big data analytics and Watson-as-a-Service cognitive computing platform.

Deloitte will also work with joint customers to help integrate the solutions into their organisation’s technology landscape.

“The global enterprise risk management domain is undergoing significant transformation, and emerging technologies like big data and predictive analytics can be used to address complex regulatory requirements,” said Tom Scampion, global risk analytics leader at Deloitte UK. “We are excited to be working with IBM to apply their market leading technologies and platforms to enable faster, more insightful business decisions. This alliance aims to completely re-frame and re-shape the risk space.”

“Financial services firms are under tremendous pressure, which has forced them to spend the majority of their IT budgets addressing regulatory requirements.  There is an opportunity to transform the approach organizations are taking and leverage the same investments to go beyond compliance and deliver real business value,” said Alistair Rennie, general manager of analytics solutions, IBM. “Combining [Deloitte’s] knowledge with our technology will provide our clients with breakthrough capabilities and deliver risk and regulatory intelligence in ways previously not possible.”

Deloitte’s no stranger to partnering with large incumbents to bolster its appeal to financial services clients. Last year the company partnered with SAP to help develop custom ERP platforms based on HANA for the financial services sector, and partnered with NetSuite to help it target industry verticals more effectively.

Deloitte, Verizon team on cybersecurity

Verizon and Deloitte are teaming up on cybersecurity

Verizon and Deloitte are teaming up on cybersecurity

Deloitte and Verizon Enterprise Solutions have announced a partnership that will see the two firms deliver a comprehensive set of cybersecurity and risk-management solutions to enterprises.

The deal will see Verizon leverage its experience in digital forensics and managed services experience and Deloitte’s cyber risk advisory services to deliver end-to-end incident response services.

“As the cybersecurity landscape becomes more formidable, this alliance enables enterprises to better prepare for today’s new reality,” said Mike Denning, vice president, global security for Verizon Enterprise Solutions.

“We understand that companies need to have the mindset that being breached is a matter of when, not if. With our combined capabilities, we are preparing enterprises to better withstand a cyberattack before and beyond the breach.”

Ed Powers, national managing principal, Deloitte cyber risk services, Deloitte said companies today are looking for more comprehensive cybersecurity tools rather than acquiring them in bits and pieces.

“Organizations today need to quickly contain the damage, but they also need a solutions provider that can help them regain full business strength and improve their capacity to withstand future crises. We are making it possible for our clients to meet tomorrow’s cyber challenges head-on while continuing to power performance in their businesses,” Powers said.

The move comes as cyberattacks like DDoS are becoming more frequent and more impactful. According to a recently published Neustar DDoS report which surveyed 250 businesses across a broad range of sectors globally, about 40 per cent of companies now estimate losses of over £100,000 per hour at peak times during a DDoS outage.

Embotics Gets $8.4 Million for Private Cloud Management

Image representing Embotics as depicted in Cru...

Private cloud management vendor Embotics Corporation today announced that it has closed $8.4 million in equity financing. Bringing Embotics’ total financing-to-date to $18 million, this latest round includes $2.5 million from VentureLink LP and $2.5 million from Covington Fund II Inc. (Covington), with the remainder of the funds coming from other private investors. Embotics will use the funding to accelerate global sales and marketing efforts, as well as to hire more software engineers.

This mix of pragmatic growth, strategic marketing and sales investments will build upon the momentum of the past year’s 300 percent growth in sales to further strengthen Embotics V-Commander’s leadership position in the private cloud management market.

“We continue to support Embotics because of its proven track record of successfully developing products that address the problems in virtual data center environments,” said Phil Reddon, managing partner of Covington. “Our experience investing in the virtualization sector, along with Embotics’ success in assisting companies with private cloud management, automation and self-service provisioning, make for a smart business and investment partnership between our two organizations.”

“We have a strong belief in Embotics and its virtualization and cloud management technology. Due to the market need for its solutions, we are confident that Embotics’ business will continue to grow,” said Jim Whitaker, managing partner of VentureLink LP. “Embotics’ clear differentiation in cloud management made its business and this opportunity very attractive to us.”

This round of financing comes on the heels of Embotics’ most successful year to date. The company has experienced 300 percent growth in sales over the past year and 220 percent year-on-year growth in new customers, which now include Bell, Deloitte, Cisco, CSC, Dutch Ministry of Defence, MITRE and numerous universities and public sector departments. In addition, Embotics has signed new channel partnerships, including one with Magirus in Europe.

“We are thrilled to continue our partnership with Covington and to begin our new relationship with VentureLink because of their proven success when it comes to supporting technology innovation,” said Jay Litkey, CEO of Embotics. “The significant increase in our sales demonstrates the opportunity that exists in the market. This financing will enable us to match that opportunity with clearly defined differentiation, corresponding sales and an increased engineering team to support new and existing customer opportunities.”