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June 27, 2017updated 28 Jun 2017 4:53pm

Box & Microsoft team up to offer AI and storage on Azure

Box Zones to soon be available from Azure locations as part of the collaboration.

By James Nunns

Microsoft Azure is to become the strategic cloud platform for Box as part of an expanded partnership.

As part of the deal the two will jointly offer Box cloud content management with Azure to enterprise customers, in addition to committing to shared go-to-market investments, including co-selling Box with Azure.

Customers can also look forward to future integration between Azure’s artificial intelligence and machine learning capabilities with Box’s cloud content management platform.

“Azure is a trusted partner in the enterprise and we’re thrilled to be integrating our technologies and going to market with Microsoft,said Aaron Levie, cofounder and CEO, Box. “Microsoft shares our vision to transform how people and organizations work and Box and Azure together can unlock incredible opportunities for innovation.”

Read more: Box Drive puts a new cloud face on the legacy shared drive

Box and Microsoft will collaborate to see Box Zones use the Redmond company’s cloud data centre footprint. At the moment this offering from Box is located in eight countries but in the future Box plans to use Azure’s global footprint to expand the offering.

“Box shares our focus and commitment to empowering enterprises on their digital transformation journey,” said Scott Guthrie, executive vice president of Microsoft’s cloud and enterprise division. “With this new partnership, we ensure customers can take advantage of Box’s platform on Azure, and look forward to future innovations using Azure’s intelligent cloud services.”

The deal is a good one for both companies, it gives Box access to the biggest enterprise company, and with collaboration and content management offerings such as Box’s thriving off partnerships and integrations, there isn’t a bigger company to be aligned with.

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Microsoft dominates the enterprise desktop market, and Box should be able to significantly boost its customer base because of this.

Microsoft’s cloud gains valuable customers and gives it yet another boost in fighting off the likes of Google within the content management and collaboration tool market.

The Box and Azure offering will be available later this year.

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