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NZ Government Approves Homegrown Cloud

by Cameron Sinclair •
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New Zealand’s only locally owned cloud provider, Catalyst Cloud, has been awarded a place on the WofG Cloud Framework Agreement by the country’s Department of Internal Affairs (DIA). 

The Cloud Framework Agreement removes procurement barriers and simplifies contractual processes for agencies. It previously included just two global giants: Amazon Web Services (AWS) and Microsoft Azure. 

Catalyst Cloud has been providing cloud infrastructure (IaaS) and platform services (PaaS) from three local data regions since 2014; in Hamilton, Wellington, and Porirua (20 min from Wellington). 

Catalyst Cloud is an offshoot of New Zealand firm Catalyst IT, which at inception in 1997, specialised in open-source software solutions. It has been a supplier to the NZ Electoral Commission since 2003, building the core election management system, maintaining the voter roll, and hosting the public results website.  

The initial 3-year agreement commenced in February 2022 with a renewal option for a further 3 years. The announcement will be accompanied by a brand relaunch and a marketing campaign, starting at the beginning of April.    Catalyst Cloud CEO, Doug Dixon, said, “The Cloud Framework Agreement is a major milestone allowing all New Zealand Government Agencies to procure cloud services from Catalyst Cloud quickly and easily, removing what has been a significant barrier to adopting local cloud for the New Zealand public sector.” 

Catlayst IT’s Australian arm has won several contracts with Australian government agencies. 

The National Archives of Australia contracted Catalyst IT for a two year period for the installation, migration and hosting of a learning management system, at an initial cost of $19,000 with an amendment of $11,520 in 2015. 

A much larger contract for Catalyst IT is the one it has with the Department of Defence. It supplies the Australian Defence and Learning Environment (ADELE) technology under a contract that runs from February 2018 to February 2023 and is valued at $3.4 million.  

Public cloud spending in New Zealand is expected to grow by more than 22% in 2022, according to a Gartner report and both Microsoft and AWS are creating local data centre regions, but neither has launched yet.   

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