Why Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella's visit to India means trouble for Amazon

With Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella stepping up stakes in India, Amazon needs to worry about its survival

Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella is on a three-day visit to India to promote the company’s cloud computing service– Azure. During his visit, Microsoft’s India-born chief is scheduled to make a pitch to more than 300 start-ups in the IT hub of India– Bengaluru to develop new applications on the company’s platform and host them on Azure. His itinerary also includes focusing on offering the company’s cloud-based services to drive digital growth in the country.

The tech titan has already inked a deal with Flipkart, as a part of which the e-commerce website would adopt Microsoft Azure as its public cloud platform, which in turn would enable it to optimise data for marketing and customer service. Nadella will also be meeting his business partners in Mumbai and holding meetings with government officials to discuss how Microsoft can play a key role in India’s digital transformation.

While Nadella’s India visit opens a world of possibilities for the digital India dream and the start-ups in the country, it also rings a bell of trouble for Amazon, the company that enjoys the luxury of leading the web-based services in India. Amazon launched Amazon Web Services (AWS) in India in 2015 and since then it has aggressively worked on expanding its services in India adding tens of thousands of customers to its kitty. Microsoft, on the other hand, was a later comer in this regard and has been playing catch up in India and the world ever since.

However, ever since Nadella took over as the CEO of the Microsoft, there has been a shift in the way the company has been organising itself both within the organisation and outside. Under his leadership, the company has shifted its focus from reinforcing its existing technologies to investing its resources in the futuristic technologies including cloud-based services. The company now stands second next only to Amazon.

Nadella’s leadership, coupled with its aggressive tactics to recapture the digital world, an arena that it once ruled, and India’s digital India dream has provided the company right set of ingredients to boost its cloud computing business. Microsoft’s popularity in India along with the investors viewing India as their premier location is giving the company the advantage that Amazon lacks.

So does this mean that Amazon needs to rejig its policies in India? Well yes, if it wants to continue harnessing the tremendous potential that India possesses.