Microsoft continued to gain momentum in the government cloud computing space, announcing this week that it has signed deals with New York City and the State of California.

Under the five year-year deal with New York City, 30,000 employees will access Microsoft’s Business Productivity Suite, which includes email and collaboration software, via the company’s cloud infrastructure. The agreement will also see employees migrate to Microsoft’s Office suite when it becomes available.

New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg said in a statement that the deal has the potential to save the city as much as $50 million over the term of the contract. “Through our partnership with Microsoft, we’ve found ways to offer our employees Microsoft’s newest, state-of-the-art computing tools while reducing the cost to taxpayers,” he stated.

The city noted that over time its various agencies have individually negotiated software contracts with Microsoft, resulting in more than 40 separate licensing agreements and associated maintenance and support packages. The new arrangement establishes three levels of software users: those who need only occasional access to specific tools, those who regularly use Microsoft’s basic programs, and “power users” who require access to the full complement of Microsoft’s applications and services.

Separately, Microsoft announced it has struck a deal to migrate more than 100 California state agencies over to its Business Productivity Online Suite. The agreement could see as many as 200,000 state employees migrated over to the cloud platform.

In a blog by Gail Thomas-Flynn, Microsoft’s vice president for states and local governments, the company notes that nearly 80 percent of California’s email systems operate on Microsoft Exchange email servers. The company is working with the state to consolidate hundreds of disparate systems and data centers onto a cloud environment.


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