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Ushering in Digital Transformation in India – Role of the Cloud

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This is Part-1 of a two-part series, based on the findings of NASSCOM’s report titled ‘Cloud Skills: Powering India’s Digital DNA


‘The Cloud’ is expected to be an US$800bn global opportunity by 2030, according to NASSCOM’s ‘Future of Technology Services – Winning in this Decade’ report.  Out of this, cloud usage is expected to be worth US$500 bn which includes all the 3 major components – SaaS, PaaS and IaaS. The rest is the Cloud services portion, estimated to be US$300bn. Another estimate by McKinsey, pegs the value of global Cloud Computing at US$1tn. Within the Public Cloud, IaaS & PaaS components are growing by 29% and 22% respectively. SaaS, however, remains the largest segment by value at 39%.

The India Story

In India, the move towards ‘Digital’ has picked up speed aided by a multitude of factors, both at the enterprise as well as the ecosystem levels. India is poised to become a significant player in the Global Cloud landscape primarily owing to a large and developing ecosystem of talent, innovation and supportive government framework. NASSCOM’s report ‘Cloud Skills – Powering India’s Digital DNA’, looks at the evolving talent landscape in India, highlights the critical skills that would be in demand and identify the catalysts that are accelerating cloud adoption across industries.It also focuses on the extent of adoption across industry segments, maps the maturity levels leveraging the CLOUD MATURITY FRAMEWORK and use-case complexities that are key enablers in the cloud adoption journey. According to estimates, India is expected to be a Cloud Talent Hub with installed talent of 2.3mn by 2025. India’s Cloud market is estimated to be US$4.4bn in 2021 and projected to grow by 26% to reach US$5.6bn in 2022. IaaS and PaaS expected to see high growth as companies are looking to migrate their apps and infra to the cloud owing to changes in consumption models.

The thrust towards cloud computing in India is primarily driven by:

  1. Need to migrate workloads to the cloud: Time-to-market is a key consideration owing to the fluid business dynamics globally. The ability to scale-up when needed is a key success factor.
  2. Modernizing legacy systems: Companies stuck with on-premise systems see the advantages in migrating to the cloud. This is primarily driven by the need to build customer-centricity and implement Digital Transformation initiatives.
  3. Improving adoption maturity across industries: While it is still early days for Indian companies, the evolution of delivery frameworks, advent of new technologies is already helping companies to shift gear towards higher levels of cloud adoption.
  4. Growth of eComm, BPM, Retail: These are the key sectors that have been early adopters of the Cloud and in-fact cloud-based internet start-ups and eComm players rely heavily on the Cloud to carry out business operations.
  5. Government support through technology enablement: The Government’s ‘Cloud-first’ initiative GI Cloud (Meghraj) is a strong enabler of the Digital India campaign. It aims to deliver inter-alia, seamless G2C services. The NITI Aayog has planned investments amounting to Rs. 7,500 crores over the next 3 years to develop a Cloud platform – AIRAWAT.

Investment trends in Indian cloud landscape:

  1. 85% of Indian tech start-ups are Cloud nativeBreak-up of VC Investments in Indian Cloud Start-ups
  2. US$3.5bn raised in 2020 by Cloud-startups
  3. SaaS start-ups accounted for 85%-90% of the investments
  4. Indian SaaS start-ups are expected to corner 7%-9% of the global SaaS market (US$20-25bn)

Industry Segment focus:

Majority of Indian companies moving or operating on the cloud are at the early-Mid levels of maturity in terms of adoption and sophistication of delivery models in use. However, that scenario is changing fast. Easily deployable SaaS solutions such as in the areas of CRM, ERP and Analytics are often the starting point.

  1. eComm and the Internet industries are at the forefront in terms of adoption and maturity.
  2. Media & Entertainment, Telecom and Manufacturing are at the tipping point of cloud adoption
  3. EdTech, Financial Services (incl. FinTech), and Direct to Consumer (D2C) are poised to witness large-scale demand for infrastructural solutions
  4. The demand is driven by the need for more infrastructure-related investments
  5. Indian SMBs and native businesses are seen to be the next driver of growth in cloud adoption
  6. The Indian start-up ecosystem is driving a large chunk of talent demand in India

Demand Trends (Business Areas)

Customer Experience (CX), CRM, Collaboration (as-a-service model) and Content are the emerging center of growth. This is also backed by growth in cloud infrastructure and enabling technologies. Cloud Management, Storage, Security and Back-up services are expected to grow by 31% till 2022.

  1. While SaaS start-ups are growing fast, the IaaS and PaaS segments are lagging behind
  2. Key areas of growth include Analytics, Infrastructure Management, Data-Centre Co-location, Process Automation, Data Governance, Storage services, and Disaster Recovery

To read more, access the full report ‘Cloud Skills: Powering India’s Digital DNA’ at the links given below: