CloudStore doubles number of suppliers, gets new services under G-Cloud mark II

The government has doubled the number of suppliers that can sell their wares to public sector IT buyers through its online cloud marketplace, the CloudStore.

The number of IT suppliers able to sell their services through the public sector's CloudStore has doubled to over 450, after the government announced its second G-Cloud framework deal.

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The government launched the CloudStore in February this year as an online marketplace where public sector IT buyers can purchase cloud services. The services were originally provided by 257 GCHQ-vetted companies but, under the second G-Cloud framework launched on Friday, that number has risen 458.

The second framework adds new services to the CloudStore catalogue including end-user device services, agile tools, antispam and captcha, gamification, learning management, and simulation and training. According to the Cabinet Office, there are now over 3,000 separate services on offer from the cloud marketplace's hundreds of suppliers.

While the second framework see the introduction of one of the largest software-as-a-services names – Salesforce – to the CloudStore's roster of vendors, around three-quarters of the suppliers on the framework are SMEs, the Cabinet Office said.

According to Chris Gledhill, MD of software company PDMS which has been on both G-Cloud frameworks, the CloudStore gives the public sector the opportunity to use a broader range of suppliers.

"We haven't really sold much through G-Cloud yet but nor has anybody else. But at the end of the day the amount of turnover through it is relatively small because it's new," he added. 

To date, 99 purchases worth over £2.2m have been made through the CloudStore, with companies including Huddle among the early beneficiaries .   

The CloudStore itself was built by UK company Solidsoft in around four weeks and it is hosted on Microsoft's cloud platform, Windows Azure.