Another Hosting Summit has come and gone, leaving us with the fond memories of slow motion magic tricks, jam sessions, cloud ninjas, and of course plenty of talk of servers, infrastructure and applications, and new business opportunities created by the broader business adoption of cloud. This was our biggest Summit yet with the event selling out twice as fast as last year and ‘hosting’ roughly 350 executives from more than 45 countries, with companies ranging from managed service providers, telcos, ISVs, VARs and SIs, to application service providers and more.

 

Our theme this year was “Think Big” and we hope the Summit provided an opportunity for the community to do just that.  We kicked off the event with a keynote from Austen Mulinder, corporate vice president of Microsoft’s Communications Sector, and Marco Limena, vice president Business Channels, Microsoft Communications Sector, and brought in senior leaders across Microsoft who all collaborate to develop and create the products, services, and opportunities to support your business. From Bob Kelly, corporate vice president of Microsoft’s Server and Cloud Platform Marketing, to Chris Capossela, senior vice president Information Worker Product Management Group, each stressed the evolution of the next generation of cloud services and the vast partner opportunities that lie ahead. Attendees chose from four separate tracks: infrastructure, applications, business and marketing, each of which offered unique perspective into a different element of the industry.

 

Overall, the Summit underscored the increasing interest in cloud services, the need to meet that growth and the opportunities that hosting service providers give if they are willing to Think Big. Limena touched on the recently released Microsoft global SMB Cloud Adoption Study, which unveiled that 39 percent of SMBs will buy an average of three cloud services over the next three years, and the Summit emphasized how the hosting industry needs to be ready with solid infrastructure, innovative services, a strong network of partners and ongoing outreach to potential customers. Together, the Summit’s four tracks created a complete picture of where to go to meet the challenges ahead: from the need for strong Microsoft SQL server offerings, to the transition of productivity applications to the cloud, to insight into the SMBs interested in hosting.

 

The Summit may have come to a close, but we hope that our hosting partners will continue to Think Big and extend the conversation online. We now have a Facebook page and Twitter for anyone in the industry to collaborate, comment and connect with fellow hosting service providers about news, services, and ideas on innovation, infrastructure, and application advancements, and new business opportunities across the hosting industry.