Science & Technology

IBM’s new managed infrastructure services business will rely on Red Hat automation

In October 2020, IBM announced that it would spin-off its infrastructure services business unit into a new, independent company. Over the ensuing year, the new, free-standing business has begun to take shape.

The new company was named Kyndryl by IBM, a loose blending of the words “kinship” and “tendril.” The name is designed to capture the spirit of people relationships to be built and nurtured, according to IBM. Under its mandate to drive IBM’s managed infrastructure services business, Kyndryl will be relying on the company’s ties to Red Hat Inc. for key automation support on behalf of major customers.

“We’re responsible for designing, building, managing and modernizing the mission-critical systems that the world depends on every day,” said Scott Kinane (pictured, left), senior director of the worldwide automation program and global services engineering portfolio management at IBM. “We run the mission-critical environments for seven of the 10 largest airlines, 28 of the top 50 banks, and all of the largest mobile providers. These companies trust us to ensure their business operations are flawlessly being run, and this is only possible by doing enterprise strength automation.”

Kinane spoke with John Furrier, host of theCUBE, SiliconANGLE Media’s livestreaming studio, during AnsibleFest 2021. He was joined during the interview by IBM distinguished engineers Anand Gopalakrishnan (pictured, right) and Lisa Chambers (pictured, center). They discussed how the new unit will use Red Hat’s OpenShift technology, the role of automation in managing IT infrastructure, and revitalizing a post-COVID economy. (* Disclosure below.)

Secure and available platform

Kyndryl will leverage Red Hat’s OpenShift cloud platform, according to Gopalakrishnan, with deployment on CoreOS. This approach will take advantage of Red Hat’s ability to provide security and operational efficiency for Kubernetes workloads through automation.

“How do we make sure that our client’s environment is secure and available all the time so that the infrastructure services we’re providing for our clients have a direct impact for their clients?” Gopalakrishnan asked. “This is what the implementation of automation using the products that we have from Red Hat has helped us achieve.”

A key element of Kyndryl’s approach involves the use of Cloud Automation Community Framework, or CACF. This framework is built around the Ansible Automation platform and was previously deployed by IBM’s Global Technology Services organization before it was spun-off into Kyndryl.

“We do a lot of identity management, primary and secondary controls through the CACF infrastructure,” Chambers explained. “We can run security health checks on all of our clients’ servers, process the data in real time, and get that out to our teams to process issues almost immediately. It’s a very robust, powerful infrastructure that supports many clients.”

The standup of IBM’s new business comes at a critical time for many enterprises as the global economy seeks to emerge from the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic. Automation provides agility and speed, essential ingredients in a return to health for any business.

“As businesses keep returning to pre-COVID levels, automation gives the possibility that clients will do more revenue capture,” Kinane said. “It’s being able to standup retail stores faster, being able to deploy business-based applications that are generating revenue for the clients at a moment’s notice. Things like that are really possible with automation and the way we’ve done this solution with Red Hat.”

Watch the complete video interview below, and be sure to check out more of SiliconANGLE’s and theCUBE’s coverage of during AnsibleFest 2021. (* Disclosure: TheCUBE is a paid media partner for AnsibleFest. Neither Red Hat Inc., the sponsor for theCUBE’s event coverage, nor other sponsors have editorial control over content on theCUBE or SiliconANGLE.)

Photo: SiliconANGLE

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