When tech companies publish annual and quarterly reports, ESG reports and other filings, GlobalData analyses the text and identifies individual sentences that relate to disruptive forces facing companies in the coming years. Cloud computing is one of these topics. Companies that excel and invest in these areas are thought to be better prepared for the future business landscape and better equipped to survive unforeseen challenges.
To assess whether cloud computing is featuring more in the summaries and strategies of tech companies, two measures were calculated. Firstly, GlobalData looked at the percentage of companies mentioning cloud computing at least once in filings during the past 12 months. The researchers found that this had increased to 87% compared to 79% in 2016. Secondly, GlobalData calculated the percentage of total analysed sentences that referred to cloud computing.
Of the 50 biggest employers in the tech sector, Oracle Corp was the company which referred to the technology the most between July 2020 and June 2021. GlobalData identified 636 cloud-related sentences in the United States-based company's filings. That represents 11.2% of all sentences.
International Business Machines Corp mentioned cloud the second most, according to the analysis. The issue was referred to in 9.2% of sentences in the company's filings.
Other top employers with high cloud mentions included SAP SE, ChinaSoft International Limited and Microsoft Corp.
Oracle Corp had the greatest focus on cloud across all tech companies with filings published in the second quarter of 2021. Of the document's 1,697 sentences, 200 (11.8%) referred to cloud computing.
This analysis provides an approximate indication of which companies are focusing on cloud and how important the issue is considered within the tech sector, but it also has limitations and should be interpreted carefully. For example, a company mentioning cloud more regularly is not necessarily proof that they are utilising new techniques or prioritising the issue, nor does it indicate whether the company's ventures into cloud computing have been successes or failures.
GlobalData also categorises cloud computing mentions by a series of subthemes. Of these subthemes, the most commonly referred to topic in the second quarter of 2021 was 'software as a service', which made up 90% of all cloud subtheme mentions by tech companies.