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Accenture Cloud First Leverages 70,000 Experts

Karthik Narain, leader, Accenture Cloud First

Accenture ($ACN) has formed Accenture Cloud First — essentially, a unification of 70,000 employees who are focused on cloud computing projects and services for customers. Accenture Cloud First essentially has a $3 billion budget — $1 billion per year — over the next three years, the global IT consulting firm says.

Accenture did not disclose whether the $3 billion figure represented R&D, payroll, potential acquisitions or some other cloud-related initiatives.

In some ways, Accenture Cloud First isn’t all that surprising. The company ranked among the world’s Top 200 Public Cloud MSPs in ChannelE2E’s 2019 research report. And it’s a safe bet Accenture will surface on the 2020 list when research results surface in November 2020.

Still, Accenture Cloud First truly formalizes a commitment to assist customers that want to accelerate their digital transformations. The new group’s expertise spans cloud migration, infrastructure, and application services. The group will also combine learning and talent development expertise; cloud change management; and cloud-ready operating models, Accenture announced.

Karthik Narain will lead Accenture Cloud First. Nahrain is a 20-year technology industry veteran based in Silicon Valley who most recently served as the lead for Accenture Technology in North America.

Accenture Cloud First: Executive Insight

Julie Sweet, chief executive officer, Accenture

Julie Sweet, chief executive officer, Accenture, commented on the news:

“COVID-19 has created a new inflection point that requires every company to dramatically accelerate the move to the cloud as a foundation for digital transformation to build the resilience, new experiences and products, trust, speed and structural cost reduction that the ongoing health, economic and societal crisis demands — and that a better future for all requires.”

Paul Daugherty, group chief executive, Accenture Technology, added:

“Accenture Cloud First, along with our $3 billion investment and our market-leading Software as a Service capabilities in Intelligent Platform Services, ensures that we provide our clients with value, speed and innovation in every part of their cloud journey.”

Accenture’s Cloud Business

Accenture’s announcement comes as businesses worldwide increasingly consume cloud services during the COVID-19 pandemic. The worldwide public cloud services market is expected to grow 6.3 percent in 2020 to a total $257.9 billion, according to research from Gartner.

Accenture has been expanding its cloud business both organically and through acquisitions. Recent cloud-focused deals have included:

  • Organize Cloud Labs, a Latin American IT service management (ITSM) and workflow automation firm.
  • Gekko, an Amazon Web Services (AWS) cloud services consulting company and MSP.
  • Icon Integration, a SAP cloud application consulting partner with supply chain solutions and business intelligence software expertise.

Accenture also acquired the Workday, Salesforce, and U.S. MuleSoft cloud IT consulting practices from Sierra-Cedar. A full list of Accenture’s M&A deals can be found here.

Additional insights from Joe Panettieri.

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