Founded in 2008, the cloud side of Google’s business wasn’t focused on commercial operations until about 2015 when it hired VMware founder Diane Greene as CEO. Greene made progress in getting Google Cloud on the map, but it was the arrival of Thomas Kurian as CEO in January 2019 that triggered the company’s rise to prominence. In just over a year with Kurian at the helm, Google Cloud rose from #9 on the Cloud Wars Top 10 to #4. Under Kurian’s leadership, Google Cloud has overhauled its culture (previously focused primarily on R&D, it’s now customer-first); its sales organization and go-to-market teams (new leader Rob Enslin looks to triple the size of its global sales team); and its product lineup. For the latter, Kurian has focused on six vertical industries. He has also reframed around customers’ digital transformations, around highly differentiated industry-specific solutions powered by AI, and around creating new value from traditional enterprise apps such as ERP, CRM and HCM.
Google Cloud’s services
Google Cloud’s broad and deep set of services include AI and ML, API management, compute, containers, data analytics, databases, developer tools, G Suite, hybrid cloud, multicloud, IoT, management tools, migration, networking, operations, security and identity, serverless computing and storage. It also focuses on offering industry-specific solutions to the following markets: retail, manufacturing, healthcare, energy, financial services, media & entertainment, government and education.
Why Google Cloud has earned a spot in the Cloud Wars Top 10
When parent company Alphabet released its calendar-2019 financial results early in 2020, it broke out for the first time some numbers for Google Cloud. For the year, Google Cloud revenue grew 53% to $8.92 billion. Beyond that, the leadership and vision of Kurian, the Cloud Wars CEO of the Year for 2019, are turning Google Cloud into a customer-centric powerhouse that will force all of its competitors to improve and deliver massive new innovation.