Chinese e-commerce giant Alibaba hired Jhou Jingren as its chief scientist. Jingren is a former Microsoft veteran who worked in the company’s Bing Search infrastructure group. According to the Wall Street Journal, Jingren will lead the Alibaba Cloud, or AliCloud, research teams in China and Seattle.
Jingren told the Journal he will be helping businesses leverage and analyze their big data by providing customized solutions.
As of March 31, AliCloud has more than 2.3 million customers, including 500,000 paying customers, according to Alibaba’s quarterly earnings statement. The group’s revenue was $165 million at the end of March, which was a 175 percent increase year-over-year.
During the fiscal first quarter, AliCloud launched 12 big data products including computing engines, data collection, and data analysis.
AliCloud is facing stiff competition from cloud-computing rivals like Amazon and Microsoft. A May survey of more than 300 public cloud customers by Cowen & Company found that Amazon Web Services (AWS) was the most commonly used cloud provider, followed by Microsoft Azure.
However, a similar survey by cloud control company HyTrust, which queried more than 500 executives at large and small companies in the U.S. and U.K., found that Microsoft’s Azure was the most popular cloud platform at 32 percent, followed by AWS at 22 percent.
Alibaba is expanding its reach in the open source community. Last April the Chinese heavyweight joined the OpenDaylight Project so it could share its experience building and integrating its own software-defined networking (SDN) and network functions virtualization (NFV) tools into its infrastructure.