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Middle East businesses turn to cloud to ease Covid-19 blues

Middle East businesses turn to cloud to ease Covid-19 blues

More than 66 per cent of regional businesses increased tech spending during lockdown

More than 66 per cent of businesses across the Middle East have had to increase their expenditure on technology during the Covid-19 lockdown, new research by cloud services company Rackspace shows.

Moreover, the majority (68 per cent), anticipate further increases in the next 12 months, the report ‘Technology Budgets: Managing Shifting Priorities’ says.

Cloud has emerged as the central focus of modern business operations, with almost two thirds (64 per cent) of IT leaders seeing cloud infrastructure as their priority when budgeting.

Cloud is also viewed as an effective way of cutting costs, with nearly half (46 per cent) of IT leaders planning to optimise their existing cloud infrastructure and about two fifths (38 per cent) intending to deploy new cloud infrastructure in order to make savings. In fact, of those companies that had planned to either move to multi or hybrid cloud (76 per cent) or develop cloud-based solutions (88 per cent) in 2020, three quarters have now accelerated these plans (74 per cent and 77 per cent respectively).

However, as spending rises, cost control becomes more important, with over three quarters (86 per cent) of IT leaders saying the pandemic has brought new concerns around budgets. Having to scale down (28 per cent) and funding innovation (25 per cent) are the most common areas of concern.

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“Many businesses have found out the hard way in 2020 that their IT systems, resources and spend tracking weren’t ready for Covid-19,” said Martin Blackburn, managing director, EMEA at Rackspace Technology.

“While it is encouraging to see so many IT leaders recognise the central role cloud can play in controlling costs, intention to follow best practices and the actual knowledge required to do so are different things, and support is often required,” he added.

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