Will EuroCloud provide some clarity and direction?

One of my recent "quotes of the week" was Lord Puttnam's excellent:
“Technology can only serve as a bridge, never as a destination.”
In recent weeks there has been plenty of activity around the Cloud Computing bridge  with way too much emphasis on jargon and technicalities.  The Intellect SaaS Group has started and is just about to publish a white paper to address that issue.  BASDA has formed a Cloud SIG.  Last week's Cloud panel at Softworld was a missed opportunity.  The Cloud Computing World Forum happens this week, and there are plenty of product announcements.  Today a new initiative is announces called EuroCloud.  I'm hoping this industry group can provide some clarity and direction to the whole Cloud topic, but it will be up to the founding members to focus on the destination rather than the components of the bridge.  

This is Europe’s first ever SaaS and cloud services business community led by Pierre-José Billotte, President and Founder of the French ASP Forum.  He has put together a team of SaaS & Cloud Computing players from the UK, Denmark, Finland, Belgium, Luxembourg and Spain along with quite a diverse group of vendor companies in support.   The launch partners include Amazon Web Services, Cloudberry Associates, Cloudmore, Compubase, Dassault Systèmes, E-Kenz, Emailvision, Esker, Huddle, INES, Ipsca, McAfee, Microsoft Corporation, Mimecast, MrTed, NTRglobal, Odyssee Mobile, Oodrive, OpSource, Panda Software, Procullux Ventures, Qualys, RunMyProcess, Saas-it Consult, salesforce.com, Servoy, STS Group, SuccessFactors and Twinfield.   That covers every kind of Cloud provider from large corporations to agile small businesses, across Software, Platform and Infrastructure as a Service.  The group will need to take care to get its messaging coherent.  

My friend and blogging colleague Phil Wainewright, independent analyst on emerging software industry trends at Procullux Ventures, is leading the UK group.  He said:

“I'm supporting the EuroCloud initiative in the UK because it represents a tremendous opportunity to promote best practices and business benefits of SaaS and cloud services across Europe. Cloud computing is a major force for aligning IT with business requirements, delivering results faster and with greater visibility and transparency to actual IT costs. EuroCloud will raise public awareness of these benefits and accelerate adoption, helping European businesses remain competitive in today's globally connected economy.”

I'm delighted Phil has invited me in at the start.  Here's the full press release.  First we are calling for members to join us so that we get good representation from across our industry.  After that, we need to focus on clear messaging so that European businesses understand the benefits of the Cloud, as well as working on common standards for inter-operability, data security and compliance issues.  

We are in the planning stage for our first event in November, but we'd love to hear from UK based Cloud and SaaS providers who are interested in joining.