Foster launches cloud computing network targeting global business

Mar 15, 2011

L-R: Minister Foster with Dermot Walsh, Network Facilitator, Whisple and Nigel Farr, General Manager, Equiniti-ICS.

Enterprise Minister Arlene Foster today launched a Northern Ireland-based cloud computing brokerage network which will target new business in the multi-billion pound global cloud services market.

Cloud computing is a new software delivery model, which provides Information and Communication Technologies (ICT) services including voice, mobile and data services on-demand over the internet under a usage-based payment process. The network, known as Whisple, will allow local companies to access the benefits of the cloud computing services in a flexible and cost effective manner.

Invest Northern Ireland offered £206,000, part funded by the European Regional Development Fund, towards a £413,000 collaboration by 10 local and international firms.

Early adopters of the cloud technology include government, media, financial services, food production and healthcare sectors. Organisations involved in the Whisple network include: Equiniti ICS, Anaeko, SQS UK, Goldblatt McGuigan, Replify, Novosco, EMC, Momentum and Swarmteams.

Arlene Foster said: “Cloud computing is a rapidly emerging industry with significant export potential. The Whisple network combines the expertise and technology of Northern Ireland’s ICT industry. By working collectively, the companies involved are in a more competitive position to win business in the cloud services market.

“The partner companies are building and operating a world-leading cloud computing platform, brokering services and products for a variety of customers. Users of the technology will benefit from reduced costs and greater flexibility in their choice of cloud services, as well as improved energy efficiency.

“Whisple will play a major role in helping to position Northern Ireland as a worldwide centre of excellence in cloud computing and as a result will help to drive future economic growth.”

Dermot Walsh of Whisple, added: “We recognised the potential to lead Northern Ireland industry into the growing cloud services marketplace and formed our network with Invest NI’s support to take maximum advantage of these global opportunities. Whisple’s vision is to become a leading player in the global business to business market for buying and selling internet-based services.”

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