Karan Bajwa promoted to lead Google Cloud in Asia Pacific region

Karan Bajwa is currently based in Gurugram, but he will relocate to Singapore this year.
Karan Bajwa, who was appointed as head of Google Cloud in India in March last year, has been elevated as the company’s new leader for Asia Pacific. A Microsoft and IBM veteran, Bajwa, will lead all regional revenue and go-to-market operations for Google Cloud, including on Google Cloud Platform (GCP) and Google Workspace. Bajwa succeeds Rick Harshman, who leaves the organisation for a new opportunity.

Bajwa is currently based in Gurugram, but he will relocate to Singapore this year. He will continue to lead Google Cloud in India until a new senior leader for the business is appointed. Bajwa will report to Rob Enslin, president of sales, Google Cloud.

“Since Karan (Bajwa) joined us in March 2020, Google Cloud in India has grown from strength to strength. He (has) advanced the digital transformation journeys of many large Indian organisations across industries and successfully expanded our partner community,” said Enslin. “He brings tremendous management and sales experience with him to this regional role, and we’re thrilled to have him at the helm of our APAC business,” he said.

Google Cloud is on a strong growth trajectory within Asia Pacific. It counts ANZ Bank, Lendlease, Optus, Sharechat and Tech Mahindra among its customers. The other customers include  L&T Finance, Wipro, Samsung Electronics, Foxconn, Kia Motors, Go-JEK, Tokopedia, and XL Axiata. The company also continues to invest in technical infrastructure in the region. It launched its GCP (Google Cloud Platform) regions in Jakarta and Seoul last year, with planned expansion to Delhi and Melbourne in 2021.

“With the disruptions of 2020 behind us, a true test of 2021 will be how companies re-platform and build on the cloud not only for resilience but agility and innovation,” said Bajwa. “I’m excited (about) the opportunity to lead Google Cloud’s business in APAC to maximize this next phase of growth,” he said.

Google competes with global rivals, such as Amazon Web Services, Microsoft, and Alibaba, to dominate cloud computing services. In India, it is eyeing areas such as banking, financial services and insurance (BFSI), manufacturing, healthcare, public sector, media and entertainment and telecom and retail.

India’s digital transformation opportunity and anticipated 850 million smartphone users by 2025 have made the country a very attractive market for big tech companies like Facebook, Amazon and Google. Also, due to the Covid-19 pandemic, more Indians are getting online. These transformations are also generating huge amounts of data.

For the past several months, Google has bagged many new customers including information technology giant Wipro and travel company Cleartrip. Also among them is National Payments Corporation of India (NPCI), an umbrella organisation for all retail payments in India. It chose the video conferencing platform Google Meet to help its employees stay connected and collaborate remotely.

Google has also formed a vibrant partner ecosystem in India that includes players such as Deloitte, Cloudcover, Searce, PwC, Netmagic and Shivaami. These partners are building healthy, long-term businesses around Google Cloud. According to research firm IDC, the Google Cloud partner opportunity in India will increase by more than 3.7X by 2025. In India, IDC expects Google Cloud partners to generate $6.11 in revenue for every $1 of Google Cloud products sold, increasing to $8.33 by 2025.

The global cloud computing market's size is expected to grow from $371.4 billion in 2020 to $832.1 billion by 2025, at a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 17.5 per cent during the forecast period, according to a report published by MarketsandMarkets.

It said digital business transformation has entered a more challenging and urgency-driven phase due to the Covid-19 pandemic. Global tech giants are providing customers with cost-effective and productive digital solutions as every industry is economically hard-hit from the pandemic. The sudden shutdowns of offices, schools, and enterprises have increased the demand for cloud solutions and services.

The cloud market in verticals such as IT, telecom, BFSI, and media and entertainment has impacted positively due to the work from home initiative. Employees are using cloud collaboration platforms for communicating and consuming OTT (over-the-top) streaming services heavily as they need to stay at home amidst lockdowns.

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