Google Cloud snaps up Cisco talent to lead Southeast Asia

Ruma Balasubramanian replaces Tim Synan
Ruma Balasubramanian (Google Cloud)

Ruma Balasubramanian (Google Cloud)

Google Cloud has appointed Ruma Balasubramanian as managing director of Southeast Asia, replacing Tim Synan who has relocated to Italy with the technology giant.

Effective immediately, Singapore-based Balasubramanian is tasked with driving the vendor’s go-to-market strategy across customer and partner segments, in addition to delivering operational execution and building on growing enterprise momentum within the region.

Balasubramanian joins Google Cloud from Cisco, having spent more than eight years in a number of regional management roles, most recently as vice president and chief transformation officer across Asia Pacific and Japan. Prior to Cisco, Balasubramanian was vice president and general manager of then Hewlett Packard’s Enterprise Services division, following more than a decade at EDS Corporation.

Balasubramanian replaces Synan who has transitioned to another role as part of Google Cloud’s Global Strategic Initiatives team, based in Milan, Italy.

“Google Cloud Platform, Google Workspace, and industry-based artificial intelligence and machine learning solutions are critical enablers for economic recovery and growth in Southeast Asia,” Balasubramanian said. “As enterprises of all sizes look to digitise, modernise and innovate, I’m thrilled to embark on this journey with Google Cloud to accelerate cloud adoption for our customers.”

Balasubramanian's appointment comes amid strong momentum for Google Cloud in Southeast Asia, with the vendor counting Bank BRI, Gojek, NTUC Fairprice Co-Operative and REA Group as key customers, in addition to Reliance Health Services, Tiki Group, True Digital and Tokopedia among others.

The move also comes six months after Google Cloud officially launched a new region in Jakarta, in a landmark move designed to help businesses overcome traditional barriers to cloud adoption in Indonesia.

The newly unveiled GCP region - first communicated to the market in October 2018 - comes with the vendor’s standard set of services, including Compute Engine, Google Kubernetes Engine and Cloud SQL, alongside Cloud Storage, Cloud Spanner, Cloud Bigtable and BigQuery.

Representing the first GCP region in Indonesia - and ninth in Asia Pacific - the launch comes with three cloud zones from the start, enabling high availability workloads across the country. Collectively, Google Cloud now offers 24 regions and 73 zones across 17 countries worldwide.

“We’ve achieved many ‘firsts’ in Southeast Asia under Tim Synan’s leadership,” added Rick Harshman, managing director of Asia Pacific at Google Cloud. “Ruma joins us at an exciting time as our business continues to grow from strength to strength in one of the most dynamic regions for technology adoption. We look forward to Ruma building on this strong foundation.”