UBS, Microsoft Announce Expansion of Cloud Partnership

UBS (SWX: UBSG) and Microsoft (NASDAQ: MSFT) announced a landmark expansion of their partnership “to accelerate UBS’s public cloud footprint over the next five years.”

Through this transformational initiative, UBS plans “to have more than 50% of its applications, including critical workloads, running on Microsoft Azure, now UBS’s primary cloud platform.”

The partnership furthers UBS’s “cloud first” strategy and “the modernization of its global technology estate.”

Through this partnership, UBS will “have access to the most comprehensive cloud platform, trusted by more than 95% of Fortune 500 companies, with a rich set of productivity and collaboration tools, enabling the firm to increase the speed at which it can deliver and improve upon its digital experiences for clients and employees.”

At the same time, Azure will “help advance UBS’s sustainability initiatives, drive operational efficiencies, and maintain its standards for compliance and security – providing strong foundations on which to scale UBS’s rate of cloud adoption.”

Mike Dargan, UBS Group Chief Digital and Information Officer, said:

“Our cloud strategy has fundamentally changed the way we operate, allowing us to reinvigorate our technology estate and reimagine how we build applications for our clients. Closely partnering and collaborating with Microsoft has and will continue to create tremendous value for our clients, our employees, the firm and our shareholders. The developments and learnings that stem from this partnership will benefit the financial services industry and beyond.”

In 2018, when UBS announced its cloud strategy, leveraging its partnership with Microsoft, it planned “to move one-third of its applications to public cloud within four years, but accomplished this goal early in February 2021.”

Now, the partnership “goes beyond just consuming cloud services to include the co-development of innovations and greater collaboration in areas like carbon reduction.”

Scott Guthrie, Executive Vice President, Cloud + AI, Microsoft, remarked:

“UBS is a forward-thinking leader in the financial services industry, and Microsoft has been fortunate to co-develop innovative applications that meet complex, regulatory requirements with their engineering teams over the past several years. Our expanded partnership will continue to accelerate the organization’s ambitious digital transformation plans, applying the power of the Microsoft Cloud to equip UBS with the agility and reliability to deliver for their clients.”

In line with the firm’s sustainability goals, UBS continues “to move certain technology platform workloads from its on-premise and private cloud servers to Azure.”

In some use cases, this has “resulted in the energy consumption of these workloads to be reduced by up to 30% to date.”

Together, UBS and Microsoft also “co-developed a Carbon Aware API, an open-source solution that provides recommendations on how to schedule workloads that require heavy compute power during times when clean, renewable or low-carbon sources of electricity are most available.”

They then provided their solution to the Green Software Foundation “so it could be shared with large and small companies around the world.”

For more details on this update, check here.

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