IT and Business Insights for SMB Solution Providers

SMB Nation Heads for the Cloud

SMB Nation announced the launch of a new company known as Cloud Nation. Cloud Nation, which will operate as a separate entity, is intended to educate and excite small to midsize businesses. By Michael Siggins

The announcement was made during a Microsoft keynote address delivered today at the WPC by Thomas Hansen, the company's vice president of SMB worldwide. The site is now live.

"Today there are more questions than answers about cloud computing," says Harry Brelsford, chairman and co-founder of Cloud Nation. "Today's launch of the Cloud Nation portal is intended to provide a community that acts as a single source of cloud information, news, educational events, resources, and reviews. It is a natural brand extension for us to complement SMB Nation. The Cloud Nation entity joins our Telephonation portal as a new addition to the SMB Nation portfolio."

From their offical press release:

Well-known Internet entrepreneur Tom Poole, who recently joined SMB Nation as CEO will also serve as CEO of Cloud Nation. “I have the same feeling today about cloud as I had in early 1995 when I developed Senior.com. Cloud is a major paradigm shift in how businesses will work in the future, and we fully intend to be the leading “go to” portal for everyone seeking information about the cloud,” Poole said.

Poole will also oversee the operations at the existing SMB Nation enterprise focusing first on quality improvements and controlled growth.

Cloud Nation has five main assets: Community, Media Content, Events, Education and Marketplace. Leading with the Community portal concept, Cloud Nation is intended to offer a robust and diverse communication platform that spurs conversations among cloud users, service providers and subject-matter experts. It is also a media site with current cloud news, content, analysis and opinions. Cloud Nation intends to present content both in-print and digitally. The events model will capitalize on the demand for content-rich events to educate people on cloud. “Many people have reached out to us already asking fundamental questions such as ‘What is the Cloud?’ and we intend to be a source of answers,” Poole said.

Cloud Nation will also feature an education component allowing users to earn a certificate after successfully completing a rigorous curriculum. This feature will be introduced at the SMB Nation Fall conference, September 30-October 2, 2011, in Las Vegas. The new portal will also offer a marketplace where cloud applications can be both reviewed and acquired.

“Our reasons for creating Cloud Nation are several-fold,” Brelsford said. “First and foremost, like our traditional SMB Nation tribal member, we have to innovate to remain relevant. Second would be that customers were asking for us to provide a robust cloud resource independent of our traditional SMB Nation brand. Third would be that it’s ‘déjà vu all over again.’ We want to excite our existing community to capitalize on the amazing cloud opportunity over the next decade. We feel we did a great job in that role this past decade with Microsoft Small Business Server and the Microsoft Small Business Specialist Community.”

“We will be leveraging SMB Nation’s existing talent and infrastructure to rapidly provide an industry leading portal to the community,” Poole said.

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