Confluent strengthens strategic alliance with Microsoft

Confluent Cloud flow chart

Confluent has entered a new strategic partnership with Microsoft to enable a seamless experience between its fully managed Apache Kafka service Confluent Cloud and Azure.

Confluent initially launched its Confluent Cloud on the Microsoft Azure marketplace in March 2020, following its arrival on the Google Cloud Platform (GCP) marketplace earlier in the year. Confluent aims to strengthen its collaboration with Microsoft around the Confluent Cloud offering on Azure with the new alliance.

“The urgency for real-time applications has grown exponentially and will only continue to accelerate as more businesses transform their digital services. Event streaming powers modern applications with real-time events from across an organization,” said Jay Kreps, co-founder and CEO at Confluent.

“We are excited to collaborate with Microsoft to help companies stay ahead of rapid demand with Confluent Cloud seamlessly available on the Azure platform. Now, event-driven applications leveraging Apache Kafka can be built faster and easier than ever.”

With Azure and Confluent Cloud seamlessly merged, customers can imbibe event streams in real-time and feed them to multiple Azure data services, including Azure Data Lake Gen 2 and Databricks, for analysis.

The platform also offers support for creating fabrics for both on-premises and cloud event streams. Through its machine learning module, Confluent Cloud on Azure provides real-time insights on incoming data, and users can choose to share these insights with real-time applications.

Furthermore, users can leverage existing Azure Active Directory identities to single sign-on (SSO) to Confluent Cloud directly from Azure.

As for billing, Confluent Cloud usage can be invoiced as part of Azure’s monthly bill with an option to draw down existing Azure commitments. Confluent Cloud services can also be tracked and managed with Azure resources.

“Real-time data is one of the biggest competitive advantages for modern businesses today, but also one of their biggest challenges, with data sprawling across so many different environments,” said Julia Liuson, corporate vice president, developer division, Microsoft.

“Which is why we are pleased to work with Confluent to enable our mutual customers to quickly provision and manage Confluent resources within their familiar Azure environments through the all-new seamless integration service built on Microsoft Azure.”