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July 24, 2015

Can Alibaba win over the international cloud market?

Alibaba announce second US data centre in quest to compete with established players like AWS and Google.

By Joao Lima

Alibaba’s data centre arm Aliyun Cloud Computing has unveiled plans to build a second US data centre, with Aliyun senior product director Li Jin stating that the facility will open in the coming months.

The director added that the group is planning to build more data centres in Europe, Japan and Singapore ahead of its intentions to become a global cloud service provider.

Tiny Haynes, research director at Gartner, told CBR that it will take a lot more than a second data centre to win over the intenational market.

"Although Alibaba has significant market share in the Chinese domestic market, it is Gartner’s view that the transition to the international market will require more investment in the go to market capabilities such as sales engineering, account management and reseller recruitment, along with building the trust of the US corporate and medium sized businesses."

"The US market is highly competitive, with internet giants such as Google still working on improving their attraction to the corporate end user in place of Amazon Web Services and Microsoft Azure.

"The intent to become larger than AWS in the international market will be watched closely, although some great challenges need to be overcome."

Alongside the data centre announcement, Alibaba also issued a Data Protection Pact on Wednesday. The initiative seeks to protect its global cloud users’ data.

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Aliyun said customers will have absolute ownership over all of their data and will also have the right to access, share, exchange, transfer or delete their data at any time.

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