Google Cloud sharpens focus on domain specialization and new partner incentives

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Google Cloud has announced a slew of new channel updates amid moves to provide support for its partners in artificial intelligence (AI), sustainability, and domain depth.

The tech giant unveiled new and expanded partnerships with partners such as IT services firm Crayon, along with a host of new incentives and support schemes for sector specification and readiness.

Bron Hastings, VP of partnerships at Google Cloud, told ITPro that a key concern for channel partners at the moment is the demand for domain depth and domain readiness. 

“Whether it's data and analytics, infrastructure modernization, or security, those are very specific domain areas that have their own services associated with them. So how do we make sure that partners that want to specialize in those areas are also domain-ready?” 

The firm also announced a new expansion of its Generative AI Partner Initiative to include firms such as AI21 Labs, Capgemini, Deloitte, Wipro, and more. Through the initiative, firms can access journey maps for generative AI and receive badges to highlight their credentials with the technology for customers. 

New firms are also being given the Google Cloud Ready - Sustainability designation, such as the financial markets sustainability firm ESG Book, or, which helps give customers insights into their supply chain emissions using AI. 

New Google Cloud partner incentives

In addition to the draw of its cloud features, the tech giant said it plans to give customers new incentives and rewards.

Hastings said that the firm is increasing its net-new logo across both Workspace and Google Cloud, and is also looking to expand its pre-sales funding to provide partners with well-orchestrated proof-of-concepts and pilots for customers.

Across 2024, some of Google Cloud’s independent software vendor (ISV) and systems integration partners will see their funding improve tenfold.

In addition to this, Hastings pointed to Google Cloud’s infrastructure record — namely its maintaining open infrastructure — as a key draw of its own for partners.

“It really supports partners and their business, because they can work with us in a deep way but it also allows them to work and meet the customer where they are, with what they've got. And so with generative AI we've got the same sort of approach, we’re supporting first-party generative AI equally to third-party generative AI because we want to create an open approach. 

“Customers will have multiple things that the partner has to serve, and so we want to have that continued commitment to openness.”

To help customers pursue generative AI through Vertex AI in more detail, Google Cloud announced an expansion of its existing relationship with IT services company Crayon. 

The two firms will double down on Google Cloud expertise through its Centers of Excellence in the EMEA and APAC regions, with over 150 data experts working with customers for better AI product delivery.

Speaking at a partner roundtable, Crayon chief executive Melissa Mulholland said Google Cloud is leading the way on seamless access to AI.

“Crayon reaches thousands and thousands of customers, and together through our partnership we’re going to be able to reach and help provide those business efficiencies and productivity,” said Mulholland.

“Having technical competency is critical, we partner with companies all the way from the largest here to the SMB space. So together, it gives scale through which we can drive change and adoption.”

Growing sustainability focus

Sustainability has become a core concern for channel partners, and this was reflected throughout the first day of Google Cloud Next London 2023. 

In the morning’s keynote session, much was made of the focus that Google Cloud places on its sustainability targets, and the cloud giant prides itself on presenting its partners with similar opportunities to curb emissions. 

Hastings told ITPro that in pursuing sustainability designations through Google, which has bold carbon goals of its own, partners can demonstrate their values and credentials for delivering ESG programs for customers. 

“Partners are trying to do two things,” said Hastings.


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“One is they are trying to be seen, in the context of if [sustainability] is a core value of the company itself, right? To be seen as supporting sustainability in their business, it's a core element of how they represent themselves.  

“There is another piece, where some partners want to help customers meet their sustainability goals. And as part of that exercise, they would be able to demonstrate how participating with Google could meet those goals.”

Google Cloud has previously worked to provide partners with green energy metrics and to give its customers oversight and control of their data center region according to carbon intensity

Rory Bathgate
Features and Multimedia Editor

Rory Bathgate is Features and Multimedia Editor at ITPro, overseeing all in-depth content and case studies. He can also be found co-hosting the ITPro Podcast with Jane McCallion, swapping a keyboard for a microphone to discuss the latest learnings with thought leaders from across the tech sector.

In his free time, Rory enjoys photography, video editing, and good science fiction. After graduating from the University of Kent with a BA in English and American Literature, Rory undertook an MA in Eighteenth-Century Studies at King’s College London. He joined ITPro in 2022 as a graduate, following four years in student journalism. You can contact Rory at or on LinkedIn.