After enjoying the tremendously successful Microsoft Tech Summit in Toronto, I am inspired by the stories of those who have harnessed power of the cloud to transform their businesses and excited about the projects many of our partners and customers are undertaking in 2018.

Over two days, we hosted more than 80 sessions, with experts covering a range of topics on the latest trends and tools in technology to help our customers achieve more with the Microsoft cloud. We also kicked off day one with an insightful panel discussion about women in the workplace and the power of diversity.

D&I Panel

Among the highlights were keynote presentations from Arpan Shah, General Manager of Azure Infrastructure Marketing, who discussed how the cloud continues to create new possibilities for all levels of business, and Catherine Boeger, General Manager, Office Marketing, on the transformational ability of Microsoft 365 to help modern businesses become more collaborative, productive and creative environments.

Shah’s keynote put the global embrace of the cloud into perspective. He noted that Gartner projects the worldwide public cloud services market to grow 18 per cent in 2017, with global cloud spending predicted to reach $390 billion (USD) by 2020, according to Forbes. If you think that number sounds big, the World Economic Forum predicts that the digital economy will be worth over $100 trillion by 2025 – this conference was really around arming you with the tools to be able to take advantage of this massive opportunity.

As part of his presentation, Shah spoke with Param Singh, Chief Operating Officer at Mojio. Mojio develops a platform that gives drivers simple, snap-in access to the data generated by the car in their app track their car, to plan and record trips, share driving information, and better understand the health of their cars. Mojio’s goal is to provide a turnkey aftermarket connected car solution for consumers via their business partners e.g. Mobile operators, Auto OEMs etc.

Success came swiftly, and with it an avalanche of data threatened to overwhelm Mojio’s existing platform inside of a year. To deal with the threat, Mojio decided to move their entire stack from a previous cloud vendor to Azure, which enabled them to launch a second-generation platform 50 per cent faster than anticipated, while avoiding an additional $1 million in estimated development costs.

Mojio has grown from bold start-up to the cloud platform of choice for the deployment of secure, connected car apps and services in a year. Mojio is currently live in 5 countries, is connecting over 5000 unique vehicle by make, model and year. In less than 12 months since launch, it has gained more than 500,000 paying subscribers who have driven 5,000,000,000+ miles generating mountains of data. They are now the leading platform in the aftermarket for connected cars, as measured by volume of data throughput, and like 90 per cent of Fortune 500 companies, they trust Microsoft to power their cloud solutions.

In Catherine Boeger’s keynote, she outlined unprecedented ways in which the modern workplace is transforming. IT professionals are at the centre of this transformation – embedded in the business, leading the conversation, architecting solutions.

By next year, two-thirds of the Global 2000 CEOs will have digital transformation at the heart of their corporate strategy. But it’s manifesting at the employee level in equally transformative ways.

Expectations are changing, and a new culture of work is emerging. Increasingly diverse and mobile employees, working across geographies, are looking for a sense of purpose, and a clear connection to a company mission. Employees are becoming more creative and collaborative with colleagues in the course of their everyday work. They want physical and digital workspaces that feel inclusive and open, and somewhere they can easily share and connect and work together. And through all of this, businesses must stay focused on maintaining an environment that’s safe and secure and protects against cyber threats.

Presenting with Boeger was Tracey Laurence, Vice President of IT Services at Rogers. Image-3Laurence is a senior advisor on the company’s transition of its workplace.

Rogers’ goal was to better enable its team members to work quickly, effectively and collaboratively, especially those with colleagues in different cities across Canada. The company views technology as a critical piece in making this happen, no matter where employees are in the company – or in the country.

Microsoft acted as Rogers’ extended team, to implement and manage the delivery of Office 365 across the enterprise. Now close to the end of the multi-year integration, with 31,000 deployments, the response has been tremendous:

  • Greater than 90% positive responses on Rogers’ technology survey
  • 70%+ of their meetings are video based extolling their video-first culture
  • 45% less energy consumed
  • 96% waste diversion
  • 42% lower OPEX per person
  • More than $15M in telephony savings over 5 years
  • More than 75% print reduction

Laurence says partnering with Microsoft was Rogers’ best for both employees and the executive leadership team alike, delivering exactly what was needed and promised.

Microsoft Tech Summit Toronto 2017 was another great coming together of innovative IT minds and creative solutions. To learn more about how Microsoft is helping companies transform their businesses, visit