Parallels: SMB Cloud Insights & Vendor Interview

This is a re-publication of an article originally posted on http://mhisham.org on February 14th 2013. The article is no longer hosted there.

Recently, at Caesars Palace in Las Vegas, Nevada, Parallels announced that small and medium business (SMB) adoption of cloud services from its partners using Parallels Automation and the Application Packaging Standard (APS) grew by more than 80% in 2012. Parallels also announced a new automation, virtualization and cloud storage products and comprehensive enhancements to Parallels control panel products.

We will post up an interview with a local vendor in Singapore, who have utilized Parallels Plesk, one of the many suite of products since 2002. The vendor is known as Vodien and here is their story, as shared by Mr Jervis Lee, Vice-President Sales.

vodien logo

When and how did Vodien first start?

Vodien was founded in 2002 as a web design studio. We were making websites for our clients, and naturally, they needed web hosting as well to host their new websites. When we started, we used a reseller hosting plan, but as time went by, we grew into multiple dedicated servers. We soon realised that we were spending more time on web hosting, and Vodien naturally evolved to become the web hosting specialists that it is today. We are now concentrating on the cloud and enterprise hosting markets, where we are continually innovating in and coming up with new features and products for our clients.

Personally, I have used Vodien to create several sites in Singapore before. From registration to web management, their online service is pretty good and easy to use.

How much different or harder, to have to cater for Linux hosting as well as Windows hosting?

We concentrate mainly on Linux hosting because the market is very comfortable with Linux-based offerings, and in fact, prefers them because of the myriad of open-source solutions available out there. Before we decided on our product range, we had to evaluate the various platforms available in terms of up-time, performance, and reliability, because those factors were extremely important. As a company, we would rather spend more time and funds on a solution that had a proven history of reliability and performance, because we felt that this would be what our clients would appreciate. We do have servers running Windows, and most of the time, only a handful of clients choose them for specific needs – such as for ASP web hosting, or for running certain Windows-based applications.

Part of the announcement include one about Parallels Automation 5.5. It is expected to ship later this year. It will include Linux and Windows Hosting, Microsoft Exchange 2013, Microsot Lync 2013 and Cloud Infrastructure.

Did the choice to use Parallel’s interface & dashboard come early in the decision making process?

We first got to know of Parallels when we were doing our research on enterprise-level virtualisation technologies. As a growing business, we needed a partner that had reliable products with good performance, and would allow us to scale up with us when we grew. Thankfully, it was a decision that we made early when planning our infrastructure, and we didn’t have to face a lot of issues with backwards compatibility or integration with too many existing systems. We found our solution in Parallels Virtuozzo Containers, an operating system virtualization solution uniquely suited to Cloud server virtualization.

Does the Parallel interface comes only for Linux hosting or it include Windows hosting as well?

As Parallels uses a virtualisation technology, it is able to run any operating system on top of it. For our main infrastructure, however, we made a choice to use and offer Linux hosting to our clients. The reasons for this was because of our expertise in Linux, and the proven track-record of the platform, which allows us to offer our clients the support, stability and performance that they require.

Were there any difficulties in integrating the Parallel interface with your infrastructure?

Thankfully, the integration went rather well and there were no major issues. One good thing that made things easy for us was that we started with virtualisation very early on in our company’s formation, so we didn’t have a lot of legacy systems.

Where are you now in terms of versions for the Parallel interface?

We are running various Parallels products, such as the latest Parallels Cloud Servers, and it has been an awesome experience for us. Parallels Cloud Server allows us to deploy a super-efficient cloud hosting infrastructure and offer a wide range of hosting and cloud services that appeal to the broadest possible customer base.

You may check out what Vodien can offer by visiting their website http://www.vodien.com



Parallels have profiled the buying behaviour of small and medium businesses (SMBs) with regards to cloud services. It uses a mixed model of Kano analysis and conjoint analysis.

The Kano model is a theory of product development and customer satisfaction developed in the 1980s by Professor Noriaki Kano which classifies customer preferences into five categories namely;

  • Attractive
  • One-Dimensional
  • Must-Be
  • Indifferent
  • Reverse

Conjoint analysis is a statistical technique used in market research to determine how people value different features that make up an individual product or service.

Source Wikipedia

This profile is known as the Parallels SMB Cloud Insights and it is now into its third year of annual publication. Some of this year’s Parallels Cloud Insights research findings include:

  • Storage is a strong upsell opportunity for infrastructure-as-a-Service providers, and 50 percent of SMBs are willing to pay more for increased storage
  • Website building tools are a key way to differentiate service providers’ offerings. Currently, 22 percent of U.S. SMBs are building and managing their websites with such tools, and 30 percent report they plan to adopt website building tools by 2015.

Additional Parallels SMB Cloud Insights™ research findings include:

 

  • Globally, the 2012 cloud services market has grown to $45 billion USD as at least 6 million SMBs entered the cloud market for the first time last year. The global market will continue to grow at 28 percent CAGR(Compounded Annual Growth rate) through 2015 to a forecasted $95 billion USD.
  • In the United States, the SMB cloud market is now $18.9 billion USD and is forecast to grow at a 19 percent CAGR through 2015. This growth is driven by SaaS applications, which saw 60 percent growth in 2012. Additionally, 68 percent of SMBs indicated they would prefer to buy their cloud services as part of a discounted bundle.
  • In Brazil, Parallels predicts the SMB market will grow by 33 percent year-over-year for the next three years, reaching $2.6 billion USD by the end of 2015.
  • In Mexico, the SMB cloud services market grew 30 percent last year, and will continue to grow at 45% over the next three years, making it one of the world’s fastest growing SMB markets

To get your copy of the annual report for the Parallels SMBs Cloud Insights, go to http://www.parallels.com/insights/

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