XON, the BBBEE South African ICT solutions business, has completed building its end-to-end ICT solutions offering with the creation of XON Storage, Compute and Availability, which will be headed up by industry veteran Jason Barr.

XON Storage, Compute and Availability complements the business’s existing divisions: networking and security, infrastructure, electrical, power generation, alternative energy, maintenance, consulting and outsource services.

“Our goal is to enable CIOs to become their own service providers within their businesses,” says XON CEO Carel Coetzee. “They need the ability to leverage the cloud where it makes sense and at the same time gain the flexibility as a service provider to be innovative to take advantage of their data and become more competitive.”

XON’s storage division will focus on six key areas to help customers achieve that: converged infrastructure, software-defined data centres, enabling services from service providers and internal IT, offering pay-as-you-use and on-demand infrastructure, business application development, support and innovation, and lastly private and hybrid cloud.

XON has extensive experience building data centres, providing connectivity, logical and physical security and this move to consolidate its storage expertise and solutions in a single division concludes its drive to deliver a holistic ICT offering.

XON has partnered with the industry’s top vendors and certified numerous employees to deliver storage solutions across a broad spectrum. Partners include EMC, Symantec, Fujitsu, VCE, VMware, HP, IBM and DELL.

Solutions from XON range from entire information platforms to virtual storage, private and hybrid cloud storage solutions and drill down into storage on demand to tiered storage, big data, archive, backup, replication, virtualisation and professional services.

The business has rolled out the offering across its footprint, which includes operations in 16 countries, with offices in Midrand, Durban, Cape Town, Namibia, Kenya, DRC and Guinea Conakry. XON is a level 3 EmpowerLogic-certified BBBEE business.

“We are increasingly encountering customers who need to deal with risk and compliance issues as they manage customer, business and partner information,” says Barr. “They need auditable processes that meet business processing requirements efficiently, cost-effectively and with the flexibility to ensure competitive operations.”

“The biggest threat that internal IT faces in organisations is service providers who, through the cloud model, can offer on-demand services in a short space of time,” says Barr. “Internal IT departments can take weeks to bring those services online and to make matters worse internal IT budgets are declining.”

70% of IT budgets are spent on running the business, and only 30% go towards changing the business, “This needs to shift to 50:50 if CEOs are to get the IT innovation they want according to Gartner.

And this needs to happen while maintaining legacy systems. The lack of skilled resources places additional pressure on CIOs and IT managers to compete with external service providers.” says Barr

He adds: “IT is often compared to short term insurance as a necessary evil but companies’ data is becoming one of the most important assets a company owns, which has seen growth that far exceeds IT budget escalations.

“Growth is primarily driven by the need to manage risk and compliance, increased production of data and consumption by mobile applications, social media and e-mail, all of which places a heavy burden on IT resources. The advent of the cloud market and the associated services that they provide does not necessarily give organisations an advantage over their competitors as these services are now standard offerings.”