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appOrbit Partners with Google Cloud Platform

Digital transformation is a goal for most. For others it is just a pipe dream. For some companies, what stops them is the amount of invested apps that they have running. These legacy apps are not that easy to replace, nor is there any incentive to ditch the apps since they are still running fine.

This is not just a seamless integration of legacy application with a secure cloud platform, but also ensures a smooth transition from one platform to another.

One company which works on accelerating digital transformation for San Jose, California based, appOrbit. The three year old startup recently made a bold move by partnering with Google Cloud Platform to enable digital transformation for companies. Their solution revolves around a new runtime environment which can run almost any application in a current-generation server, as well as test and deploy these through DevOps processes.

The appOrbit solution also assures a quick migration of legacy applications, including those using Siebel and Oracle, to run on any cloud and container infrastructure. This is where their partnership with GCP comes into focus. With the partnership, Google would provide a ready cloud hosting solution for the company’s apps.

The appOrbit solution and GCP partnership also assures an environment for building, deploying, testing, and managing applications, including those which are microservices-based, to be movable to any other infrastructure. This means that if the company so wishes, they can test on GCP, prior to running their application in their own company server. All of these appOrbit features are available without any changes to the code.

This is not an application migration solution. Rather, the novel approach, will allow the user to test and run their applications as is and in original code. This frees the app from any machine or OS dependency, which would result in shorter release cycles, improving quality, and savings on cost.

Proven Cloud Technology

The app is already in use with more than 20 companies which include Ericsson and KPIT Technologies. The company had a successful round of Series A funding last year and was launched in June. The funding round was led by Kleiner Perkins and Costanoa Ventures.

CEO and co-founder Rahul Ravular explained that the company’s aim was to simplify applications management, in whatever environment, including three-tier, microservice, native cloud or legacy enterprise and to run it on any cloud platform. With the GCP partnership, the user applications can be deployed to Google Cloud, and can still be used as a native enterprise server application. This hybrid approach would be much welcome for those enterprises which have a substantial investment in hardware and in the applications.

One advantage of the approach is that the customers can easily move to the cloud without any time spent on refactoring the application for the web or the cloud. In addition, questions of security are answered by Google Cloud’s proven quality and security.  This is not just a seamless integration of legacy application with a secure cloud platform, but also ensures a smooth transition from one platform to another. The effort would be transparent and easily attained without any extra effort on the part of the developers. On top of that, customers can take advantage of Google’s fractional billing system, assuring the availability of the application from anywhere, and at the right price. The resulting savings could help the enterprise in the creation of new net applications or other investments, as they see fit.

 

UberEATS is Geared for Enormous Growth

Uber, the ride hailing giant, may be receiving heat in different parts of the world due to regulation issues. However, its food delivery subsidiary UberEATS has officially become a global success.

One of the reasons for the success of UberEATS is its network of drivers. It already has a pool of over 2 million drivers which they can also tap to deliver the food.

Reports released in July 2017 say UberEATS experienced growth in 27 cities all over the world. The company is present in a total of 108 cities. The data revealed that UberEATS has made 24% more deliveries between March 2016 and March 2017.

As a food delivery company, UberEATS serves as a third-party delivery service partnered with various restaurants and food establishments. It was a bold idea that caught up quickly and was fully embraced by a market that’s after convenience and saving time when buying food.

The experience of working with UberEATS became an eye-opener for restaurant owners. Many experienced an overwhelming surge in orders and delivery requests. The orders are placed and paid for online, using either the mobile app or on the computer via the company website.

Its popularity in extremely developed cities like Tokyo, Seoul, Taiwan, and Taipei is a testament to how much people are now dependent on technology for everything.

UberEATS IPO?

UberEATS’ chief executive Dara Khosrowshahi is confident that the company’s expansion will continue. Unlike the ride-hailing app which is experiencing major challenges in densely-populated cities, UberEATS is readying itself for an initial public offering. The CEO said it could be as soon as 18 to 36 months given the growing trend towards food delivery.

Graphic of profits of UberEATS

Global Management and Consulting firm McKinsey pegged the food delivery industry as worth $100 billion, making up about 1% of the overall food market. The competition here is very cutthroat, especially since retail giant Amazon has decided to join in on the fray.

There are two types of food delivery companies: aggregators and full delivery services. UberEATS belongs to the latter type; it takes orders via an online portal and then delivers the food to various patrons. Apart from earning from the add-on charges for the delivery, the company also earns a fixed amount from the restaurants or food establishments.

The aggregators, for their part, just collate menus and options and post them at an online portal. The orders are collated and made to the establishment, but the actual orders are still delivered by the restaurants. So essentially, it saves the customer the hassle of looking for and calling the restaurant themselves. In a way, you can consider UberEATS as an end-to-end service provider.

Grubhub is one of the closest competitors of UberEATS and has registered $3 billion in food sales in the year 2016. It has an estimated fan base of 8.17 million customers.

UberEATS, on the other hand, started in 2014 in Los Angeles, CA. Its original name was UberFRESH; back then they offered pre-packed lunches and dinners from different restaurants. There were issues about freshness and food safety, so the name was eventually changed to UberEATS and was relaunched in Toronto, Canada in December of 2015. The service became a hit and the division worked hard to bring in more partner establishments and restaurants.

One of the reasons for the success of UberEATS is its network of drivers. It already has a pool of over 2 million drivers which they can also tap to deliver the food. Basically, the delivery partner arrives at the restaurant, picks up the freshly cooked food, and then delivers it to the customer within minutes using their bike, car, or scooter, or even on foot.

With these last mile logistics firmly in place, UberEATS is setting the pace for what food delivery should and would be like in the future.

Dutch Firms Offer Qatar Food Security

Seven Dutch companies in the Middle East and Gulf areas have presented bold ideas and proposed solutions to the Qatar food security problems.

The Dutch companies involved in the initiative are: the Bom Group, Bosman Van Zaal, Certhon, Priva, Westland International Projects, Aldo Van Os, and VEK Global Greenhouse Projects.

The Gulf Times reported that these companies, known for their expertise in erecting technologically-advanced greenhouses, may help increase local production of agricultural products. The long-term goal is to make and give Qatar food security.

The embassy of the Netherlands, based in the country’s capital of Doha, organized the event. The Dutch companies presented plants to Qatari stakeholders; the horticulture match-making activity highlighted the Netherlands’ achievements in greenhouse horticulture as well as being one of the top producers of seeds and vegetables.

Incidentally, the Netherlands is also the second biggest food exporter after the United States. This puts them in an excellent position to offer innovative, market, and science-driven food production plans and to solve Qatar food security problems and other countries in the world.

Qatar Food Security Challenges

Geographical positions place of Qatar is a disadvantage when it comes to growing produce. The scarcity of water and limited arable land has always made it difficult for the country to develop its food security.  This has made them extremely dependent on imported grains and food items, and because of limited food production, the situation has led to a sense of insecurity among residents.

Qatar food security and food production graphics of water, farming, & food.

Food security means that citizens have access to healthy and sufficient food and that they don’t live with the fear of growing hungry. While food production is not scarce in the Middle East, it is notable that the diets are of poor-quality due to limited food choices. Food commonly procured there is high in sugar, is processed, or is high in saturated fats. Such types of food increase the risk of obesity and other types of chronic diseases.

While it cannot be said that Qataris never tried to farm the land they have, it is also true that water deficit and soil infertility keep them from gaining something substantial from their labors.

The Dutch-led initiative makes use of advanced technology to create greenhouses which require far less water to produce crops. In other countries like China and the US, vertical farms exist and create more sustainable means of farming. These farms also require very little land use and are also mostly weather-resistant.  Creating greenhouses help maximize the ample amount of sunlight Doha receives while vertical farming will maximize the limited area they have.

There’s also technology to recycle water and use artificial intelligence (AI)-driven delivery system that ensures there is no water wastage in these agricultural efforts.

The Dutch companies involved in the initiative are the Bom Group, Bosman Van Zaal, Certhon, Priva, Westland International Projects, Aldo Van Os, and VEK Global Greenhouse Projects. All of these firms have been screened and are more than qualified, given their impressive portfolios.

Their greenhouses are also able to produce crops in any climate conditions. If a county like Qatar will succeed in this project, the rest of the world should sit up and take notice.