Integrator Logicalis is banking on becoming the top integrator in the higher education space after investing in a native connection into the education sector's Janet network.
The VAR has extended the entire Janet network into its high-density datacentre and its range of cloud services. Chris Gabriel, solutions and marketing director, estimated the total investment in the facilities and connection to be £12m.
"Higher education is fundamentally changing the way it wants to procure and own IT," he said.
"In the channel, this is one of the biggest investments in the sector that anyone has made for a while."
Logicalis is conducting pilots for a range of education services, including hosting open-source virtual learning offering Moodle. Gabriel stressed the importance of remaining a skilled integrator, as well as a virtual provider.
"If customers want to buy all the kit and own it, we are a great systems integrator," he explained. "But as soon as a customer says ‘I do not really want the kit, but I want the service', that is where our datacentre comes in."
Rival integrator ONI recently invested in building its own datacentre. Sales and marketing director Kevin Kivlochan said changes in end users' consumption habits might take longer than some expect, but the market is moving to an as-a-service model.
"Outdated integrators that install and maintain boxes will die off," he said.
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