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Indian Channel Giant HCL Launches Dedicated Google Cloud Unit

The global systems integrator's expanded practice will ultimately grow to more than 5,000 Google Cloud-oriented professionals. HCL will also designate Google its ‘preferred provider’ for some industries and open Google Cloud Labs that deliver proofs-of-concept in the U.S., UK and India.

HCL Technologies, one of the world's largest systems integrators, revealed plans on Thursday to launch a dedicated Google Cloud Business Unit, marking another channel win for the industry's third largest public cloud provider.

The decision by the Noida, India-based firm to commit more human and physical resources to its Google practice is the latest show of partner support for Google Cloud under the leadership of CEO Thomas Kurian, who has been looking to bulk up Google's enterprise muscle.

As part of the expanded partnership, HCL will name Google Cloud its "preferred provider" for some industries. That means the company will take a "Google Cloud-first" approach to serving those unspecified verticals.

[Related: Deloitte: Google Will Be Its ‘Fastest Growing Billion-Dollar Business’]

HCL's new Google Cloud group "will focus entirely on helping enterprise customers plan and execute large-scale migrations of workloads and applications to Google Cloud," blogged Kevin Ichhpurani, Google Cloud's corporate vice president for global ecosystem.

"This will help more customers take advantage of Google Cloud, and expand Google Cloud’s enterprise presence within large accounts," Ichhpurani said.

The Indian systems integrator with clients around the globe will dedicate new engineering, solutions and business teams to its growing Google practice—HCL currently has more than 1,300 employees trained on Google Cloud and plans to scale that number to more than 5,000.

Google and HCL will invest jointly in solutions around SAP workload migration to GCP; hybrid and multi-cloud deployments using Google's Anthos Kubernetes platform (of which HCL was a launch partner); big data and artificial intelligence to enable e-commerce, supply chain and marketing; DevSecOps and service orchestration; as well as bringing to market Google's G Suite office productivity portfolio.

HCL's new Google business unit will also introduce Cloud Native Labs exclusive to that practice in Dallas, London and India. At those locations, HCL will be able to rapidly show customers minimum viable products and pilots on Google's platform.

"These labs will provide customers a landscape to innovate by engaging in business-focused design workshops," Ichhpurani said.

"HCL and Google have a deep and long-standing relationship, and this new business unit is a strategic step forward in our partnership," HCL President and CEO C Vijayakumar said in a prepared statement.

"I am confident that the Google Cloud Business Unit will accelerate execution of digital transformation of global organizations as well as incubate new IP and solutions that will redefine the market," Vijayakumar added.

Kurian issued the statement: "Through our partnership with HCL, we can help organizations deploy Google Cloud broadly and at scale, and move their most critical, data-intensive workloads to GCP."

Google, once far more popular with cloud-native developers and web-scale service providers than traditional enterprises, has become more relevant to SI practices under Kurian, who has ramped the company's salesforce and channel outreach in pursuit of Fortune 500 customers.

In August, Google Cloud scored a win when DXC Technology entered a "strategic partnership" that saw the Tysons, Va.-based systems integrator commit to launching centers of excellence for the Google Cloud Platform.

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