Microsoft’s cloud email services chosen by UK post office

In the battle to win market share for cloud computing services, one of the advantages in Microsoft’s can claim is its formidable partner network. So this should not come as a surprise: in the announcement that the UK Royal Mail Group is signing on to run 30,000 desktops with Microsoft’s Business Productivity Online Suite (BPOS), a partnership was a key factor.

The deal was won by CSC (NYSE:CSC), a Microsoft partner that booked $16 billion in revenue over the last year from its various hosting, application development and system integration offerings. And the contract builds on a relationship that CSC has had with the Royal Mail for more than five years.

CSC says this is the first victory by a Microsoft partner in delivering cloud computing services at an enterprise level. The BPOS product line being offered to Royal Mail includes Exchange Online, SharePoint Online, Office and Live Meeting.

Several weeks ago, Google stole a contract away from Microsoft for supplying services to 30,000 desktops in the Los Angeles city government. (see Los Angeles city council OKs move to Google apps.

The Royal Mail Group runs the postal services for the UK; it employs over 176,000 people and operates 12,000 branches.

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