Making Money by Jump-Starting a Move to the Cloud

The road to the cloud is paved with good intentions, but it’s also full of roadblocks for companies looking to move business-critical applications off-premises. Here’s how partners can drive customers to the cloud and rake in cash along the way.

Seven years ago, it was all still new and a little scary. Microsoft’s then-CEO, Steve Ballmer, took the stage at the Worldwide Partner Conference in Houston and started talking about hosted applications. He said that Microsoft would host its own applications, thereby competing with partners. He said that Microsoft’s hosting model would grow faster than partners’ models would, predicting, basically, that Microsoft would beat partners at the hosting game.