Who are the biggest cloud providers?

Cloud computing has taken off like wildfire. In that vein there is a bit of discrepancy between who the largest cloud company is and isn’t. Is perception reality? One could argue that perception is reality. And the perception today is that Amazon (NASDAQ:AMZN) is the largest. That may be the perception, but the reality is far different.

Amazon by the Numbers

Today, Amazon’s market cap is $180 billion. In fiscal 2012, Amazon reported $61 billion in revenue. In Nov 2013, Alex Williams (@alexwilliams) of TechCrunch reported that the AWS (Amazon’s Web Services) portion is “…widely believed to be a $3.5 billion business.” That is a substantial business on its own, but pales in comparison with the revenue from the rest of the Amazon portfolio; namely amazon.com. Meaning, AWS may account for less than 6% of Amazon’s total revenue.

Largest Cloud Computing Providers

Now let’s look at the larger, publicly traded companies that focus on cloud computing solely:

Market Cap (as of Jan 24, 2014)

Google (NASDAQ:GOOG) = $379 billion

Salesforce (NYSE:CRM) = $36 billion

LinkedIn (NYSE:LNKD) = $25 billion

Workday (NYSE:WDAY) = $16 billion

NetSuite (NYSE:N) = $8 billion

ServiceNow (NYSE:NOW) = $8 billion

Concur (NASDAQ:CNQR) = $6 billion

Now, these are closer to pure-play cloud providers. Meaning, their only business is cloud-based services. And they don’t represent two other groups: Diversified public companies and privately held companies.

Diversified Cloud Companies

While cloud computing may not be their primary source of revenue, one can not exclude this group from the mix. Some of the larger companies include:

Microsoft (NASDAQ:MSFT) = $309 billion -> 365, Dynamics, Azure

Oracle (NYSE:ORCL) = $168 billion -> Cloud

SAP (NYSE:SAP) = $92 billion -> Cloud

IBM (NYSE:IBM) = $196 billion -> SoftLayer

HP (NYSE:HPQ) = $55 billion -> Cloud

Verizon (NYSE:VZ) = $137 billion -> Terremark

Rackspace (NYSE:RAX) = $5 billion -> Cloud

The revenue from cloud alone from each of these companies can easily reach into the billions of dollars.

Privately Held Cloud Companies

Aside from publicly traded companies, there are a number of privately held companies. Some of which are startups. Of late, companies such as Box and Dropbox have received valuations of $2 billion and $8 billion respectively. And this is before they go IPO.

Perception vs. Reality

The point is, Amazon’s AWS may garner the 800lb gorilla perception, but there are a number of other viable and larger cloud providers in the market today. And this doesn’t account for the up-and-coming providers that could provide Amazon with some healthy competition.

Tim Crawford is ranked as one of the Top 100 Most Influential Chief Information Technology Officers (#4), Top 100 Most Social CIOs (#7), Top 20 People Most Retweeted by IT Leaders (#5) and Top 100 Cloud Experts and Influencers. Tim is a strategic CIO & advisor that works with large global enterprise organizations across a number of industries including financial services, healthcare, major airlines and high-tech. Tim’s work differentiates and catapults organizations in transformative ways through the use of technology as a strategic lever. Tim takes a provocative, but pragmatic approach to the intersection of business and technology. Tim is an internationally renowned CIO thought leader including Digital Transformation, Cloud Computing, Data Analytics and Internet of Things (IoT). Tim has served as CIO and other senior IT roles with global organizations such as Konica Minolta/ All Covered, Stanford University, Knight-Ridder, Philips Electronics and National Semiconductor. Tim is also the host of the CIO In The Know (CIOitk) podcast. CIOitk is a weekly podcast that interviews CIOs on the top issues facing CIOs today. Tim holds an MBA in International Business with Honors from Golden Gate University Ageno School of Business and a Bachelor of Science degree in Computer Information Systems from Golden Gate University.