In the highly dynamic and geographically separated enterprise infrastructures of present times, ways of providing employees access to business resources from remote locations, while giving them a user experience equivalent in quality and accessibility that is achieved in a physical office, are finding prominence. Demand for enterprise mobility by end-users, with the provision of seamlessly moving from desktops to laptops to smartphones and different kinds of operating systems, has further highlighted the need for adopting effective ways of virtualization solutions.
These factors have had a significant positive impact on the growth of the global workspace as a service (WaaS) market in the past few years. As enterprises continue to expand their operations across the globe and promote policies such as bring-your-own-device (BYOD) and choose-your-own-device (CYOD), the need for effective WaaS solutions will continue to remain high. Transparency Market Research states that the global WaaS market will expand at a high 12.10% CAGR over the period between 2015 and 2023. The market, which had a valuation of US$7.4 bn in 2014, is expected to rise to US$18.3 bn by 2023 at this pace.
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Education and Healthcare Sectors to Create Promising Growth Opportunities for WaaS Solutions
WaaS solutions are finding an increasing level of adoption across industries such as banking, financial services and insurance (BFSI), travel and hospitality, healthcare, IT and telecommunication, manufacturing, retail, education, and a number of government sectors. Of these, BFSI is presently the dominant end-use industry. The sector contributed US$2.25 bn to the overall revenues of the global WaaS market in 2014.
However, the education and healthcare sectors are expected to lead to the most promising growth opportunities for WaaS solutions and applications in the next few years. Over the period between 2015 and 2023, the WaaS market in the education and healthcare industries is expected to expand at CAGRs of 13.0% and 12.9%, respectively. The rising use of industry-specific virtualized applications in these industries will drive the demand for WaaS solutions.
North America to Retain Dominance but MEA to Offer Prime Opportunities for Future Growth
In terms of geography, North America is presently the most prominent region for the WaaS market. In 2014, North America emerged as the largest revenue contributor to the global market, holding a valuation of US$3.01 bn. The region is expected to exhibit excellent growth and retain its dominance over the next few years as well. Europe followed North America in terms of revenue contribution to the global market in the said year.
These regions are, however, expected to lose prominence to emerging economies across Asia Pacific and Middle East and Africa over the period between 2015 and 2023. The rising number of small- and medium-sized enterprises in these regions will be the key force triggering the increased adoption of WaaS solutions. According to a recent study undertaken by Parallels SMB Cloud Insights (U.S.) in 2014, the demand for WaaS services such as virtual desktop infrastructure (VDI) for small- and medium-sized businesses (with employee strength of 20-99 employees and 100-999 employees) was 19% and 33%, respectively, in 2014. By 2017, these numbers are expected to rise to 24% and 47%.
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Acquisitions Emerge as a Popular Expansion Strategy
The global WaaS market features a moderately consolidated competitive landscape, with internationals and local players operating amid stiff competition. While most large companies in the market are focused on establishing their hold on an increasing number of verticals and regional markets, small- and medium-sized companies are focusing on the development of innovative and cost-effective solutions. Acquisitions of smaller firms by international companies has emerged as a common growth strategy.
Recently, in February 2015, VMware, Inc., which is one of the market’s most prominent vendors, took course of a strategic acquisition by securing Immidio B.V., a privately held company offering user environment management (UEM) solutions. The acquisition strengthened VMware’s profile management capabilities to customize virtual desktop delivery. Other prominent vendors in the market are Citrix Systems, Inc., Amazon Web Services, Inc., Econocom Group SA/NV, Colt Group S.A., Unisys Corporation, Independence IT Corporation, Getronics Global Services BV, Microsoft Corporation, and Dell, Inc.