In the elevator industry, breakdowns are bad for business. So when Thyssenkrupp North America needed help predicting when to service its lifts, it turned to Microsoft Corp , a partnership that illustrates how Microsoft’s chief executive, Satya Nadella, Microsoft focus on cloud, partnerships paying off grow its own business.
A 2014 meeting between the leadership of the North American operations of Germany’s Thyssenkrupp AG and newly installed Microsoft CEO Nadella led to MAX, Microsoft focus on cloud, partnerships paying off a predictive maintenance service built on Azure, Microsoft’s cloud-computing platform, which has since been used to connect the elevators of 41,000 Thyssenkrupp customers to the cloud.
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Before that meeting Microsoft focus on cloud, partnerships paying off, the company’s relationship with Microsoft consisted largely of renewing its license for Windows software. Since then, Thyssenkrupp North America’s spending with Microsoft has more than doubled, CEO Patrick Bass told Reuters. “Our IT spend as a whole total is going down, and yet our capabilities and our total spend with Microsoft have substantially increased.”
Microsoft focus on cloud, partnerships paying off to enlarge its relationship with customers like Thyssenkrupp has been a key to Nadella’s strategy, and it has paid off: Microsoft shares are up 180 percent since Nadella took over, and its market cap edged above $800 billion for the first time earlier this month.
Its work with Thyssenkrupp illustrates the success Microsoft focus on cloud, partnerships paying off has had in moving from its traditional licensing model to an emphasis on partnerships and subscription-based cloud-computing products and services.
Bass said Thyssenkrupp has flagged 26 digitisation projects, and today every single one “has some touch point into the tech platforms of Microsoft.” Thyssenkrupp has “gone from being a producer of things and a servicer of things to selling things as a service,” said Sam George, Microsoft director of Azure IoT engineering. “They’ve gone through quite a transformation.”