New AWS Asia Pacific (Hong Kong) Region expands cloud pioneer’s global footprint and enables customers to run applications and store their content in data centers in Hong Kong while connecting to global AWS network
Hong Kong SAR government welcomes the launch as an economic development milestone, citing the demand for large-scale cloud technology infrastructure
Thousands of customers and APN Partners across Hong Kong welcome the new AWS Asia Pacific (Hong Kong) Region, including 9GAG, Bowtie, Cathay Pacific, Comba Telecom, FinFabrik, Fox Networks Group Asia Pacific Limited, Gogo Tech, HSBC, Hong Kong Disneyland, KPMG China, Melco Resorts & Entertainment, New World Development, Next Digital, RADICA, Royale International Group, Swire Coca-Cola, Television Broadcasts Limited (TVB), Union Medical Healthcare, and many more.
Amazon Web Services, Inc. (AWS), an Amazon.com company (AMZN), today announced the opening of the AWS Asia Pacific (Hong Kong) Region. With this launch, AWS now spans 64 Availability Zones within 21 geographic regions around the world, and has announced plans for 12 more Availability Zones and four more AWS Regions in Bahrain, Cape Town, Jakarta, and Milan. The AWS Asia Pacific (Hong Kong) Region is the eighth active AWS Region in Asia Pacific and mainland China along with Beijing, Mumbai, Ningxia, Seoul, Singapore, Sydney, and Tokyo. Starting today, developers, startups, and enterprises, as well as government, education, and non-profit organizations can leverage the new AWS Asia Pacific (Hong Kong) Region to run their applications locally, serve end-users across Hong Kong with lower latency, and leverage advanced technologies from the world’s leading cloud with the broadest and deepest suite of cloud services to drive innovation. Customers can get started today at: https://aws.amazon.com/local/hongkong/
“Hong Kong is globally recognized as a leading financial tech hub and one of the top places where startups build their businesses, so we’ve had many customers asking us for an AWS Region in Hong Kong so they can build their businesses on the world’s leading cloud with the broadest and deepest feature set,” said Peter DeSantis, Vice President of Global Infrastructure and Customer Support, Amazon Web Services. “The dynamic business environment that exists in Hong Kong – among startups, enterprises, and government organizations – is pushing them to be one of the foremost digital areas in Asia. By providing an AWS Region in Hong Kong Special Administrative Region, we hope this enables more customers to be more agile, innovate, and transform their end-users’ experience for decades to come.”
“We are delighted to see the official launch of the AWS Asia Pacific (Hong Kong) Region, and it comes at a time when we are embracing digital transformation and developing into an international innovation and technology hub,” said Nicholas W Yang, JP, Secretary for Innovation and Technology, Hong Kong Special Administrative Region Government. “Data has become a new currency of the digital economy and a new fuel for innovation. This infrastructure region is an integral component to foster technology advancements, allowing for greater innovation and further facilitating our digital transformation. The opening of the AWS Asia Pacific (Hong Kong) Region also enhances our leading position as a data hub and puts Hong Kong in a strong position to lead the next wave of innovation in data-related technologies.”
The AWS Asia Pacific (Hong Kong) Region offers three Availability Zones at launch. AWS Regions are comprised of Availability Zones, which are technology infrastructure in separate and distinct geographic locations with enough distance to significantly reduce the risk of a single event impacting business continuity, yet near enough to provide low latency for high availability applications. Each Availability Zone has independent power, cooling, and physical security and is connected via redundant, ultra-low-latency networks. AWS customers focused on high availability can design their applications to run in multiple Availability Zones to achieve even greater fault-tolerance. With the scale of three Availability Zones, the AWS Asia Pacific (Hong Kong) Region will enable organizations to provide lower latency to end users in Hong Kong, and across Asia Pacific. Additionally, local AWS customers with data residency requirements can now store their content in Hong Kong Special Administrative Region with the assurance that their content will not move without consent, while customers building applications now have access to another secure AWS infrastructure region that meets the highest levels of security, compliance, and data protection.
Customers and APN Partners welcome the new AWS Asia Pacific (Hong Kong) Region
Millions of active customers are using AWS each month in over 190 countries around the world, including hundreds of thousands of customers in Asia Pacific, and thousands of customers in Hong Kong. Organizations across Hong Kong are moving their mission-critical workloads to AWS to drive cost savings, accelerate innovation, and speed-up time-to-market, including enterprise customers such as Asia Miles, Cathay Pacific, Chinachem Group, Comba Telecom, Fox Networks Group Asia Pacific Limited, HK01, HSBC, Hong Kong Disneyland, Kerry Logistics, KeptMe, KPMG China, Melco Resorts & Entertainment, New World Development, Next Digital, Ocean Park, Royale International Group, Swire Coca-Cola, Towngas, Turner, Television Broadcasts Limited (TVB) and Union Medical Healthcare. AWS is also an enabler for Hong Kong’s most successful startups such as 8 Securities, 9GAG, AfterShip, Bowtie, FinFabrik, GreenTomato, GRANA, Gogo Tech, Haymarket, Kopi, Lalamove, Madhead, polljoy, PIXELS, Prenetics, SHOPLINE, Vyond, WeLend, WiZ Connected, and many more.
Cathay Pacific, the Hong Kong-based international airline, has been using AWS since 2016, helping the airline deliver customer-centric products and services responsively, delivering a high level of performance and reliability for Cathay Pacific’s website and booking engine infrastructure. “AWS helped us re-architect and modernize our technology stacks into a cloud native design, reducing the software development duration time by 67 percent and infrastructure costs by 50 percent. This allowed us to improve our efficiency and time-to-market significantly,” said Lawrence Fong, General Manager, IT Solutions, and Information Technology of Cathay Pacific. “AWS’s impressive and leading suite of services has opened up a world of possibilities to our IT team, putting the foremost technology at our fingertips so we can test new concepts, and deliver innovative ideas quickly to our end-users. One such idea-to-implementation is to enable blockchain technology for Asia Miles, which will provide Asia Miles partners a single data source when managing account activity with a near real-time ability to manage rewards. Bringing a new AWS Region to Hong Kong reduces latency for our engineering team, helping them experiment faster and bring new tools to our travelers, ultimately resulting in a better customer experience.”
Television Broadcasts Limited (TVB), broadcasting in Hong Kong since 1967, is the first wireless commercial TV station in Hong Kong. As Hong Kong’s largest broadcaster, TVB provides around-the-clock entertainment and news to more than seven million Hong Kong viewers, and operates an international licensing and distribution business accessible in more than 200 countries and regions. “During the year, our terrestrial TV channels continue to capture robust viewership and report an average audience share of 82 percent against all TV channels, both free and pay, during weekday prime time,” said SK Cheong, TVB Executive Director and General Manager. “We have transformed from a traditional TV station to a complete spectrum of media platforms spanning terrestrial TV, over-the-top (OTT) service, and social media, and AWS helps us handle traffic spikes, uplift service availability, and boost productivity of our digital media business during this journey. By leveraging the vast amount of features that AWS offers, we have been able to build a new content marketing and e-commerce business model in our online video platform, Big Big Channel, and take a leading role in transforming standard television to a full digitalized and interactive experience. With the AWS Asia Pacific (Hong Kong) Region, we will further strengthen our technology platform, lower latency to online viewers, and continue toward our goal to expand our digital business to a global scale.”
New World Development (NWD) is one of Hong Kong’s largest corporations focused on property development, infrastructure, and services. New World Development develops and invests in properties in Hong Kong Special Administrative Region, mainland China, and Southeast Asia, and its portfolio includes development and investment in about 24 million square feet of Hong Kong residential and commercial property; investments in 17 hotels; and an additional 4.5 million square feet of land planned for development. “By running on AWS, we have reduced our time-to-market by 30 percent, and improved service availability by up to 50 percent, all while saving 60 percent on our overall infrastructure cost compared to running on-premises data centers,” said Jason Lui, Assistant General Manager, Technology and Digital Services, New World Development. “NWD uses services like Amazon EC2, Amazon RDS, Amazon S3, Amazon Route 53, Amazon Cloudfront, Application Load Balancer, Amazon Workdocs, Amazon Workspaces, AWS IAM, AWS WAF, and AWS Certificate Manager. Now, with the AWS Asia Pacific (Hong Kong) Region, we can leverage more of AWS’s services at near instantaneous speed, which only furthers our technology journey.”
Swire Coca-Cola is one of the largest Coca-Cola bottlers in the world with the exclusive rights to manufacture, market and distribute products from The Coca-Cola Company in Hong Kong Special Administrative Region, Taiwan, 11 provinces and the Shanghai Municipality in mainland China, as well as an extensive area of the western United States. “We started our cloud journey with AWS in 2018, with a belief that going all-in on cloud would accelerate innovation, and speed-up time-to-market, which ultimately will boost our business growth,” said Calvin Ho, Group Manager of Enterprise Architecture, Cloud Service & IT Operations. “We are planning to retire our existing data centers, saving us money on infrastructure costs, while increasing our operational agility with the security and reliability that AWS provides. We look forward to extending our partnership with AWS in the new AWS Asia Pacific (Hong Kong) Region, while modernizing our digital applications so we can provide a better experience to our customers in Hong Kong, and across Greater China.”
Bowtie, an Insurtech firm, was granted Hong Kong’s first virtual insurance company license in 2018. Virtual insurers need to meet the same standards that regulators require of traditional insurers, and Bowtie has used AWS’s technology to attract both a younger generation, and modern users for a convenient experience as a website and a mobile app. “As a truly ‘made in Hong Kong’ insurance brand, Bowtie is here to reinvent insurance,” said Michael Chan, Co-founder and Co-CEO of Bowtie. “Bowtie runs its core system platform, including policy administration, claims and underwriting applications on AWS. Building on top of AWS has allowed us to ensure our company operates in a highly secure and available space as required of insurance companies operating in a highly regulated environment. AWS has more security certifications than any other cloud provider, bringing our customers, and us, a peace of mind that couldn’t be achieved with another cloud platform. With the launch of the AWS Asia Pacific (Hong Kong) Region, we will also be able to meet any requirements to keep our workloads on Hong Kong Special Administrative Region soil.”
WeLab, a leading Fintech company in Asia, is reinventing traditional financial services by creating seamless mobile experiences with proprietary risk management technology and artificial intelligence capabilities, operating in both B2C and B2B segments. The startup has recently been granted a virtual banking license by the Hong Kong Monetary Authority, becoming the first home-grown Hong Kong Fintech company to establish a virtual bank. In Hong Kong, consumer financing solutions are offered to retail customers under the brand WeLend. “We leverage the technology breadth and stability of AWS to run our business, for example, using AWS to analyze unstructured mobile big data to make credit decisions for individual borrowers in seconds,” said Eddie Tse, Head of IT, WeLend. “The simplicity and commoditization of technologies that AWS delivers enables us to be more agile and reserve more time to solve real business problems rather than common platform challenges. The launch of the AWS Asia Pacific (Hong Kong) Region will further help us use more of AWS’s leading cloud services, and move workloads that require low latency or data residency requirements to execute in the cloud.”
AWS Partner Network (APN) Partners welcomed the arrival of the AWS Asia Pacific (Hong Kong) Region. The APN includes tens of thousands of Independent Software Vendors (ISV) and Systems Integrators (SI) around the world. APN Partners build innovative solutions and services on AWS and the APN helps by providing business, technical, marketing, and go-to-market support. SI Consulting Partners supporting enterprise and public sector customers in Hong Kong to migrate to AWS include Accenture, Capgemini, China Mobile International, Cloudaxis, CloudConnect, DXC Technology, eCloudValley, GrandTech Cloud Services, ICG, Infosys, Masterson Technology, Nextlink Technology, Rackspace, Telstra, GrowthOps, WTT HK, and many others. APN ISVs in Hong Kong including Deskvault, Multiable, NanoMatriX, RADICA, Torstone Technology, and many others, are already using AWS to deliver their software to customers around the world and will serve their Hong Kong customers from the AWS Asia Pacific (Hong Kong) Region at launch. Customers can also easily find, trial, deploy, and buy software solutions for AWS on the AWS Marketplace. For the full list of the members of the AWS Partner Network, please visit: https://aws.amazon.com/partners/.
Accenture, a longtime APN Consulting Partner, is a leading global professional services company, providing a broad range of services and solutions in strategy, consulting, digital, technology, and operations. With 477,000 people serving clients in more than 120 countries, Accenture drives innovation to improve the way the world works and lives. “With nearly 15 years of collaboration with AWS, Accenture has engineered solutions for tens of thousands of applications on AWS and employs more than 5,000 cloud professionals trained and certified on AWS which are helping accelerate innovation for clients globally,” said Peter Yen, managing director and intelligent engineering services lead at Accenture Greater China. “The Accenture Amazon Business Group (AABG) also holds 13 AWS awarded competencies in SAP, security, mobile, IOT, big data, and machine learning, among others. Accenture is committed to helping local clients compete at a global level by joining AWS in their Hong Kong launch and expanding our own dedicated AABG team in Hong Kong. With impressive results for clients, such as Cathay Pacific, Accenture is now more ready than ever to help Hong Kong clients every day across every industry.”
Jointly engineered by VMware and AWS, VMware Cloud on AWS is an on-demand hybrid cloud service that is delivered, sold, and supported by VMware and its partners. VMware Cloud on AWS enables customers to run applications across a consistent VMware vSphere-based hybrid cloud environment, with optimized access to a broad range of AWS services. “Customers across Asia Pacific and in all industries power their digital businesses using both AWS and VMware,” said Duncan Hewett, Senior Vice President and General Manager, Asia-Pacific and Japan at VMware. “Many want to integrate their on-premises data centers with AWS to create a consistent hybrid cloud environment. VMware Cloud on AWS delivers on this promise and we look forward to extending the coverage to the new AWS Asia Pacific (Hong Kong) in 2019. We look forward to empowering customers to quickly and confidently scale up or down capacity, without change or friction, and accelerate their cloud migrations.”
RADICA provides digital marketing solutions to around 300 businesses, working with customers across Asia to help clients boost the value of their customer data and customer relationship management (CRM) systems for email, mobile, and social media messaging campaigns. The Hong Kong-headquartered company offers a proprietary e-communication integration platform which automates campaign activity and sends out as many as three million marketing messages a day. “To maximize agility, we have migrated the e-communication platform to AWS, reshaping and strengthening our IT infrastructure,” said Wallis Chan, Managing Director of RADICA. “We have been able to enhance our services significantly and can launch multi-channel campaigns for new clients around 80 percent faster. Previously, customers may have had to wait up to three months to deploy this platform for digital campaigns. RADICA uses multiple Amazon EC2 instance types including M4, C4, R3, and l2, which provides speedy SSD-backed instance storage for high random I/O performance. Half of our IT team is now able to concentrate on development as opposed to administration. We believe that the launch of AWS Asia Pacific (Hong Kong) Region will further help us drive our business forward.”
Investing in the future of Hong Kong
In 2008, AWS opened its first Amazon CloudFront Point of Presence (PoP) in Hong Kong Special Administrative Region to enable customers to serve content to end-users with low latency. AWS has since added two more PoPs in Hong Kong, the latest going live in 2016, the same year AWS also launched the first Direct Connect location in Hong Kong. In 2013, AWS opened its first office in Hong Kong, which is today staffed by a wide range of functions including business development, solutions architects, professional services, technical support, technology evangelists, startup community, infrastructure engineers, and business operations.
AWS is also continuing to invest in the upskilling of local developers, students, and the next generation of IT leaders in Hong Kong through programs such as AWS Academy and AWS Educate. For students, the AWS Educate program provides access to AWS services and content designed to build knowledge and skills in cloud computing. Dozens of universities and business schools in Hong Kong already participating in the program include the Chinese Methodist School North Point 1, City University of Hong Kong, College of Professional and Continuing Education, The University of Hong Kong School of Professional and Continuing Education (HKU SPACE), Hong Kong Baptist University, Hong Kong Community College, Hong Kong Institute of Technology, Hong Kong Institute of Vocational Education (IVE), Hong Kong University of Science and Technology, Hong Kong Information Engineering College, the School of Professional Education and Executive Development, the Chinese University of Hong Kong, the Education University of Hong Kong, the Hong Kong Management Association, The Hong Kong Polytechnic University, The Open University of Hong Kong, and The University of Hong Kong, and many more.
Another program for higher education institutes is AWS Academy, which provides AWS-authored curriculum for students to acquire in-demand cloud computing skills. In Hong Kong, major institutions taking part include City University of Hong Kong, Community College of City University, Hong Kong Community College of Hong Kong Polytechnic University, Hong Kong Institute of Vocational Education, Hong Kong Institute of Technology, Hong Kong Management Association, School of Professional Education and Executive Development, Hong Kong Polytechnic University, Technological Higher Education Institute of Hong Kong, The School of Professional And Continuing Education of The University of Hong Kong and Youth College. AWS also offers a full range of training and certification programs to help those interested in the latest cloud computing technologies, best practices, and architectures to advance their technical skills and further support Hong Kong organizations in their digital transformation.
To help grow the next generation of Hong Kong enterprises, AWS supports startups across Hong Kong. AWS launched the AWS Activate program globally in 2013, helping provide Hong Kong startups access to guidance and one-on-one time with AWS experts as well as web-based training, self-paced labs, customer support, third-party offers, and up to $100,000 in AWS Cloud Credits. AWS also collaborates with local accelerators and incubators such as Cyberport, and Hong Kong Science and Technology Parks Corporation (HKSTP) to provide startups with access to peers and investors.
Developers and businesses can access the AWS Asia Pacific (Hong Kong) Region beginning today. A full list of services and details on pricing is available at https://aws.amazon.com/local/hongkong/
About Amazon Web Services
For 13 years, Amazon Web Services has been the world’s most comprehensive and broadly adopted cloud platform. AWS offers over 165 fully featured services for compute, storage, databases, networking, analytics, robotics, machine learning and artificial intelligence (AI), Internet of Things (IoT), mobile, security, hybrid, virtual and augmented reality (VR and AR), media, and application development, deployment, and management from 64 Availability Zones (AZs) within 21 geographic regions, spanning the U.S., Australia, Brazil, Canada, China, France, Germany, Hong Kong Special Administrative Region, India, Ireland, Japan, Korea, Singapore, Sweden, and the UK. Millions of customers including the fastest-growing startups, largest enterprises, and leading government agencies—trust AWS to power their infrastructure, become more agile, and lower costs. To learn more about AWS, visit aws.amazon.com.
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