Chinese organizations should leverage the benefits of private cloud to address emerging requirements such as more agile technology services to improve customer engagement. However, determining which private cloud solution your company should choose is not a matter of size or market share. What’s most important is fit for purpose — your purpose. And that’s exactly what our The Forrester Wave: Private Cloud Solutions In China, Q1 2015 report helps you determine.

Charlie Dai and I spent the past six months identifying and evaluating the leading vendors in the private cloud space in China by scoring them against 24 criteria, grouped into three high-level buckets:

  • Current offering. A vendor’s position on the vertical axis of the Forrester Wave graphic indicates the strength of its current product offering. The key current offering criteria are cloud management and self-service access, service management and creation, automation capabilities, heterogeneity, contract terms and support, and cost.
  • Strategy. A vendor’s position on the horizontal axis indicates the strength of its go-to-market strategy. Forrester evaluates strategy with planned enhancements, strategic vision, third-party ecosystem, partnerships, and customer experience.
  • Market presence. The size of a vendor’s bubble on the chart indicates its market presence in China. Forrester evaluates market size via installed base and revenue.

This report evaluates nine vendors: 99Cloud, Bingosoft, Citrix, HP, Huawei, IBM, Microsoft, VMware, and Yonyou. Each of these vendors sells a software-only solution that allows complete automation and management of the cloud infrastructure provisioning process. All vendors had to have operations in mainland China. The solutions these vendors offer to the Chinese market all have the following characteristics: 1) a self-service portal and role-based access; 2) infrastructure provisioning capabilities; 3) management capabilities; 4) resource monitoring and tracking; 5) API-based; and 6) the solution was generally available on December 1, 2014.

In addition, we scored qualifying vendors based on a strictly timed and scripted hour-long demo, a detailed questionnaire, three customer reference interviews, and a 1-hour strategy briefing with vendor executive. We found that global and local vendors alike face challenges including:

  • Global vendors are taking the lead, but localization takes time.Although global vendors are taking the lead in the private cloud solution market, most of them still focus on traditional products such as hardware and foundational virtualization software.
  • Local vendors focus on delivering unique value.Relatively small local vendors provide Chinese customers with flexible services, such as long-term on-site consulting and maintenance services and the functional optimization of private cloud solutions based on customer requirements.

We encourage Forrester clients to view detailed product evaluations and adapt criteria weightings to fit their individual needs through the Forrester Wave Excel-based vendor comparison tool. We also hope that Forrester clients in China seeking a private cloud solution will leverage their Inquiry access to learn more about these vendors before embarking on their selection process.