Europe’s tech industry to receive $400mn boost from Abu Dhabi’s Mubadala
Mubadala Investment Company has revealed plans to invest $400mn into leading European technology companies.
The fund, which also includes SoftBank as a strategic investor, will target founder-led, high growth technology companies with global scale and impact.
Mubadala made the announcement during London Tech Week, a week-long festival of technology and innovation focused on creating new innovative investment opportunities in the UK.
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Ibrahim Ajami, Head of Mubada Ventures, commented: “We see strong potential in the European tech ecosystem with an array of dynamic, founder-led companies seeking funding and support from a committed partner. Mubadala has the global network of large assets and relationships and a partner mindset to accelerate the development of Europe’s high-growth tech companies.
“This strategy builds on the foundations that we built in the US with our ventures efforts. Innovation and technology continue to play a key role in the economic diversification of the UAE and we are well-placed to build a bridge to bring exceptional European tech companies to Abu Dhabi.”
Mubadala has over a decade of experience of investing in the technology sector, beginning in 2007 when it acquired a significant stake in Advanced Micro Devices.
In addition to this, Mubadala owns GLOBALFOUNDRIES, the world’s second-largest pure-play semiconductor manufacturer.
The planned investment in Europe’s tech firms comes as research from the International Data Corporation (IDC) highlighted how underprepared European companies are to transfer to multicloud operations.
IDC surveyed more than 600 key business executives about their cloud plans and only 9% were found to be ready for multicloud adoption, despite the technology being widely recognised as mission critical for companies in the near future.
GfK and VMware: Innovating together on hybrid cloud
GfK has been the global leader in data and analytics for more than 85 years, supplying its clients with optimised decision inputs.
In its capacity as a strategic and technical partner, VMware has been walking GfK along its digital transformation path for over a decade.
“We are a demanding and singularly dynamic customer, which is why a close partnership with VMware is integral to the success of everyone involved,” said Joerg Hesselink, Global Head of Infrastructure, GfK IT Services.
Four years ago, the Nuremberg-based researcher expanded its on-premises infrastructure by introducing VMware vRealize Automation. In doing so, it laid a solid foundation, resulting in a self-service hybrid-cloud environment.
By expanding on the basis of VMware Cloud on AWS and VMware Cloud Foundation with vRealize Cloud Management, GfK has given itself a secure infrastructure and reliable operations by efficiently operating processes, policies, people and tools in both private and public cloud environments.
One important step for GfK involved migrating from multiple cloud providers to just a single one. The team chose VMware.
“VMware is the market leader for on-premises virtualisation and hybrid-cloud solutions, so it was only logical to tackle the next project for the future together,” says Hesselink.
Migration to the VMware-based environment was integrated into existing hardware simply and smoothly in April 2020. Going forward, GfK’s new hybrid cloud model will establish a harmonised core system complete with VMware Cloud on AWS, VMware Cloud Foundation with vRealize Cloud Management and a volume rising from an initial 500 VMs to a total of 4,000 VMs.
“We are modernising, protecting and scaling our applications with the world’s leading hybrid cloud solution: VMware Cloud on AWS, following VMware on Google Cloud Platform,” adds Hesselink.
The hybrid cloud-based infrastructure also empowers GfK to respond to new and future projects with astonishing agility: Resources can now be shifted quickly and easily from the private to the public cloud – without modifying the nature of interaction with the environment.
The gfknewron project is a good example – the company’s latest AI-powered product is based exclusively on public cloud technology. The consistency guaranteed by VMware Cloud on AWS eases the burden on both regular staff and the IT team. Better still, since the teams are already familiar with the VMware environment, the learning curve for upskilling is short.
One very important factor for the GfK was that VMware Cloud on AWS constituted an investment in future-proof technology that will stay relevant.
“The new cloud-based infrastructure comprising VMware Cloud on AWS and VMware Cloud Foundation forges a successful link between on-premises and cloud-based solutions,” says Hesselink. “That in turn enables GfK to efficiently develop its own modern applications and solutions.
“In market research, everything is data-driven. So, we need the best technological basis to efficiently process large volumes of data and consistently distill them into logical insights that genuinely benefit the client.
“We transform data and information into actionable knowledge that serves as a sustainable driver of business growth. VMware Cloud on AWS is an investment in a platform that helps us be well prepared for whatever the future may hold.”