Microsoft's Office 365 cloud service has caught on with 66 percent of top MSPs (managed services providers), according to the MSPmentor 501 survey. So where does Google Apps rank? Here are insights.

Joe Panettieri, Former Editorial Director

January 3, 2014

2 Min Read
Microsoft Office 365 Gains MSP Partner Momentum

More than two years after Microsoft launched Office 365, the cloud and SaaS service has gained critical mass with leading managed services providers (MSPs). Indeed, 66 percent of the world’s top 501 MSPs say they offer Office 365 to their end-customers — up from 51.5 percent last year. But does that mean MSPs are actually profiting from Microsoft’s cloud?

First, let me clarify the numbers. The data is based on our latest MSPmentor 501 survey results — which will be unveiled in February 2014. I do believe a growing number of MSPs are betting on Office 365. Folks like Jamison West, CEO of Arterian, are connecting the dots between Office 365, Windows Azure and Microsoft’s hybrid cloud management tools. Also, Kaseya recently acquired Command 365, an Office 365 management tool that many MSPs leverage.

Microsoft is also making it easier for partners to shift or switch customers from one Office 365 offering to another.

True Success?

Still, it’s difficult to say how many MSPs actually generate substantial revenues and profits from Office 365. For instance:

  • How many MSPs have sold 1,000 or more Office 365 seats in the past year — and what’s the anticipated MSP sales rate in 2014?

  • What is the average revenue per user (ARPU) that MSPs are driving, and is the figure growing?

  • What consulting services — and at what rate — are MSPs wrapping around Office 365 deployments?

Generally speaking, it’s impossible to find answers to those questions.

Google Apps Competition

Also of note: Google Apps continues to gain momentum with cloud services aggregators and MSPs. Indeed 24 percent of the world’s top MSPs now offer Google Apps, and the search giant has also been improving its partner program in recent months. The latest move involves a more flexible Google Apps payment plan, allowing MSPs and cloud brokers so select monthly or annual approaches based on their preferences.

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About the Author(s)

Joe Panettieri

Former Editorial Director, Nine Lives Media, a division of Penton Media

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