Microsoft has issued a war cry to VMware and Google, claiming it has a moral duty to migrate its rivals' customers to Office 365.
At a UK-specific breakout session at its Worldwide Partner Conference (WPC) event in Houston, Microsoft UK's head of technology James Akrigg told partners that customers "should not suffer any more" on rival cloud offerings.
"[About] competing and winning against Google [in the cloud] – I care about customers deeply. I do not believe that our customers should suffer anymore," he said.
"We have a moral opportunity, a right, a mission, to seek out those customers that have perhaps chosen a cloud – not the right one – and help them become more productive and to deliver better business results through Office 365.
"The other point I want to raise is the VMware thing. I speak to partners throughout the year and when I ask ‘why do you still provide VMware to your customers?', I hear, ‘we give [customers] what they ask for.' I have not met a single customer who asked to pay more for technology, have less capability and have very, very uncertain future."
Akrigg's speech came in a UK-specific breakout session, which about 500 partners attended. In it, general manager Clare Barclay (pictured) delivered the UK scorecard for FY13.
She claimed Microsoft UK's commercial business grew annually by seven per cent, while its Public Sector arm crept up by two per cent over the same period.
Barclay said cloud sales had driven growth across its SMB and Enterprise divisions, which grew nine per cent and six per cent respectively over the past year.
Its Lync business doubled last year, she added, while its Infrastructure and Database segments took share from their respective competitors VMware and Oracle – although she did not share the specific numbers.
Product wise, its Office 365 business more than tripled in size, while its cloud-based Azure offering grew by 122 per cent.
Barclay thanked the partners who attended the event for their hard work over the past year, and rallied them in considering the cloud in the coming year.
She said the UK business shared the corporate growth strategy of investing in the following areas: enterprise social, consumerisation of IT, business analytics, business solutions, deployment, modern datacentres, Windows 8 and tablets and Office 365.
For its FY13, Microsoft UK claims it pumped $250m (£165m) into advertising, $105m into channel incentives – something Barclay pinpointed would grow this fiscal year – and $15m into its demand generation fund.
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