Banker ASB has become an anchor tenant for Microsoft’s New Zealand datacentres after selecting Microsoft Azure as its preferred cloud platform.
Hundreds of ASB’s applications and thousands of servers will shift to the Microsoft Azure cloud, which ASB said would create significant efficiencies and deliver a range of benefits, including increased agility, resilience and security.
ASB executive general manager for technology and operations David Bullock said it had been excellent to see Microsoft investing in New Zealand through technology infrastructure and skills development.
"Shifting to the cloud is a core part of ASB’s digital transformation ambitions and we’re looking forward to working closely with the Microsoft team to drive forward innovation together," he said.
“Among other benefits, storing the vast majority of our servers and applications in the Azure cloud will allow us to deliver even better digital experiences for our people and customers that are faster, more personalised, and more reliable than they are today.
"We’ll also be able to innovate faster when creating new digital offerings and partner with other technology organisations more easily in the future."
Last month government insurance agency Accident Compensation also signed up as a cornerstone user of Microsoft's yet-to-be-launched datacentre region.
Microsoft New Zealand managing director Vanessa Sorenson described the announcement is a "true milestone" in Microsoft’s decades’ long relationship with ASB.
“With our local datacentre region investment we aren’t just investing in servers and cables, we’re investing in the future of New Zealand innovation, providing the kind of capacity and access to new tools that haven’t been seen here before," Sorenson said.
Over comping months, ASB and Microsoft will carry out the foundational work required for the shift. While more than 150 ASB engineers were already Azure certified, this included further upskilling of members of the bank’s technology team.
“It’s an exciting time for our technology team, with some great opportunities for our engineers to roll up their sleeves and work with cloud technologies, and collaborate with our partners at Microsoft," Bullock said.
"We’ll also be growing our team as we grow our capabilities, so this is the start of huge transformation that’s going to take banking into the future.”