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Bharti Airtel to get into SaaS Business – ‘CIO in the cloud’

Airtel is almost becoming a demigod – they have the leading market share and is moving from being a pure play telecom operator to an entity, which is at the center of ecosystem and can potentially drive innovation/businesses.

Airtel plans to offer SaaS to SMBs and is in talks with Oracle, SAP, Microsoft, Google and Jamcracker to offer different applications on a pay-per-use or software-as-a-service (SaaS) model [source]

Airtel’s SaaS story

  • Google And Airtel have partnered to enable Google Apps for Airtel’s broadband customers.
  • Microsoft and Airtel, in partnership offers hosted messaging and collaboration solutions to SMBs.

The Mantra

‘Leveraging its countrywide infrastructure of backbone network and data centres, Bharti aims to play the role of “CIO in the cloud” for the SMBs.’

These surely are winds of change; and one SaaS player that I expect to kick-ass is Zoho – suprisingly, they haven’t yet focused on the Indian market (and is letting Google bag all the partnerships) – there is big money lying on the table and SaaS is surely becoming an interesting play.

There is nothing like Telcos pushing the SaaS pipe  to SMBs – it just increases awareness and adoption.

What’s your opinion?

Recommended Readings: Sunil Mittal on Entrepreneurship, Startup Life and Soccer

List of SaaS startups in India

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