The battle for competitiveness in the cloud.

In this age of radical transformation for supply chains, top companies are tying together prevailing concepts, like big data and the Internet of Things (IoT), with cloud-based computing. Supply chains are being reimagined as digital networks that track not only physical goods, but also people, data, and money. As such, global technology giants continue to invest heavily in cloud computing.

The Chinese e-commerce company Alibaba Group Holding, Ltd. recently announced that it is launching its first international venture – a cloud computing hub in Silicon Valley, proving the fierce competition for market share is stiffening both globally and on the home turf. Notably, all five top-ranked companies listed by the 2013 Strategy & Global Information, Communications and Technology 50 study bet their future on cloud technologies. The companies (IBM, Microsoft, SAP, Oracle, and Cisco Systems) could not, until recently, be perceived as direct competitors, and now they all wield cloud-based portfolios as their competitive weapon of choice.

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