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CenturyLink Augments Cloud Solutions With Azure MSP Program

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CenturyLink, Inc. CTL has teamed up with Microsoft Corp.’s MSFT cloud computing service, Azure, to be part of the Networking Managed Service Provider (MSP) Program. The alliance is likely to reinforce the Monroe, LA-based communications company’s commitment to edge computing services, fueled by increasing migration of enterprise workloads to multi-cloud networking environments.

With best-in-class network capabilities across 170,000 on-net buildings, CenturyLink’s global footprint bears a significant impact on Azure’s innovative products and services. Markedly, the Networking MSP program has been specifically designed to provide impeccable user experience and dedicated consultation services around the Azure platform for CenturyLink customers. It also delivers seamless and cost-effective cloud and hybrid networking solutions to a wide array of businesses and consumers.

With Microsoft’s comprehensive portfolio of cloud technologies, CenturyLink aims to provide a multi-layered networking infrastructure for secured and agile cloud computing solutions. These solutions automate application deployments, scale workloads, enhance cost efficiency and manage connections across different operating environments. Moreover, Microsoft inked a contract with CenturyLink to provide high performance connectivity to Azure datacenters, which are considered as the store houses of storage and networking facilities.

Being a Microsoft Gold-Certified partner, CenturyLink had previously been recognized as Azure Expert Managed Services Provider for its value-added customer services and thorough technical expertise. The certification recognizes CenturyLink's contribution in training and technology to generate higher revenues and support digital transformation for customers on Microsoft Azure platform. In addition, CenturyLink leverages its Cloud Connect Dynamic Connections platform to provide real-time network and cloud connectivity services for enterprises in Microsoft Azure and Azure Government.

With evolving operations, corporations need a fast and easier way to connect their locations and data centers to cloud service providers. CenturyLink offers a comprehensive portfolio of solutions for cloud connectivity. The company’s global access and extensive Wavelength, Ethernet and IP VPN connectivity options are designed to meet today’s hybrid cloud requirements. Apart from Microsoft Azure, it provides high-performance connections to Amazon Web Services, Google Cloud, IBM Cloud, Oracle Cloud Infrastructure, and other key public and private clouds with more than 2,200 third-party data centers.

CenturyLink is focused on boosting operational efficiencies through various methods, including network simplification and rationalization, which would aid in improving its end-to-end provisioning time and drive standardization. It aims to establish itself as a global leader in cloud infrastructure and hosted IT solutions arena designed for enterprise customers. Strong network capabilities, integrated hosting and network solutions are likely to promote growth in its cloud business. Notably, the company views its managed and cloud services as a key differentiator from other players in the market.

CenturyLink has a long-term earnings growth expectation of 7.4%. The stock has gained 12.5% compared with the industry’s rise of 9.6% in the past six months.

The Zacks Rank #3 (Hold) stock is currently trading with a forward P/E of 8.91X. It topped earnings estimates twice in the trailing four quarters, the positive surprise being 8.1%, on average.

A couple of better-ranked stocks in the broader industry are Telenav, Inc. TNAV and Perion Network Ltd. (PERI - Free Report) , both sporting a Zacks Rank #1 (Strong Buy). You can see the complete list of today’s Zacks #1 Rank stocks here.

Telenav exceeded estimates twice in the trailing four quarters, the positive earnings surprise being 77.1%, on average.

Perion Network exceeded estimates in each of the trailing four quarters, the positive earnings surprise being 87.9%, on average.

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