BT Group Migrates Mainframes to the Cloud with Kyndryl

BT targets $21 million in annual savings from a reduction in mainframe operating costs.

Christine Horton, Contributing Editor

January 31, 2023

2 Min Read
data center

BT Group’s Digital Unit has enlisted Kyndryl to migrate a number of the company’s mainframe applications to the cloud.

The project will see the unit move critical legacy applications that service BT’s legacy copper business and consumer broadband products to the cloud.

The 10-year partnership draws on Kyndryl’s hyperscaler capabilities and partner ecosystem. BT said the deal will enable it to reduce mainframe operating costs and energy consumption by 70%. This, it said, will leading to savings worth more than £17 million ($20.94 million) a year by 2026.


BT Group’s Harmeen Mehta

“We like thinking out of the box to solve complex problems,” said Harmeen Mehta, chief digital and innovation officer at BT Group. These problems include moving off mainframes given the prohibitive increase in legacy infrastructure cost without rewriting decades-old applications.

“Working with Kyndryl, we figured out how to turn legacy mainframes into modern digital apps and run them at a fraction of the cost,” he said.

Applications to Be Retired, Refactored or Rehosted

Kyndryl currently runs BT Group’s mainframe estate. It now aims to deliver the new transformation project by 2026. As part of the project, some applications are being “retired,” contributing to the Group’s target to get to fewer than 500 strategic systems by 2027. Others will be “refactored” – redeveloped into BT Group’s existing strategic systems and architecture – or rehosted, where they are repackaged to operate in a cloud environment.

BT said the applications will have application programming interface (API) and microservices capabilities to help integrate the value of data across wider BT Group systems. Applications will be hooked into BT Group’s service management platform, and support its ‘AIOps’ self-healing IT estate model. This will reduce the risk of downtime and accelerate and automate fixes. It will enhance other applications´ ability to call on data and capabilities within the mainframe applications, providing more seamless customer experiences. It will also support customers with the migration to modern fibre services as the legacy copper networks are retired in the years ahead.


Kyndryl’s Petra Goude

Petra Goude is global practice leader, core enterprise and zCloud, Kyndryl. She said the migration is “an ambitious and critical program.”

“Migrating from mainframes to cloud extends the usefulness and lifespan of these applications in a modern, micro-services led, cloud-centric way and helps unlock intelligent data insights. We’re excited to draw on our deep knowledge, ecosystem of partners and community of industry leading experts to help deliver this transformation.”

Want to contact the author directly about this story? Have ideas for a follow-up article? Email Christine Horton or connect with her on LinkedIn.


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About the Author(s)

Christine Horton

Contributing Editor, Channel Futures

Christine Horton writes about all kinds of technology from a business perspective. Specializing in the IT sales channel, she is a former editor and now regular contributor to leading channel and business publications. She has a particular focus on EMEA for Channel Futures.

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