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China’s Alibaba and U.S.-Based Red Hat Ink Global Software Deal

October 12, 2017, 11:33 AM UTC

Alibaba, the Chinese e-commerce and cloud computing giant, will start selling Red Hat’s business software globally, the two companies said late Wednesday.

Many Fortune 500 companies run Red Hat Enterprise Linux operating systems on their own servers. They may also opt to run it on third-party cloud data centers run by Amazon Web Services, Microsoft (MSFT), or Google (GOOG) because Red Hat already has formal ties to those three companies. Now, Red Hat is also allied with Alibaba and its Aliyun cloud.

Red Hat (RHT) Linux and other Red Hat business software will be available from Alibaba’s cloud within months, the two companies said. The news was announced at an Alibaba tech conference in Hangzhou, China.

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Alibaba (BABA) is busily expanding beyond China, opening data centers in the U.S., Japan, and elsewhere to support multinational companies. The company is seen as a rival to Seattle-based Amazon both in retail and cloud computing technology. While Alibaba is building its presence outside China, Amazon has been building cloud data centers around the world at a fast clip. Amazon sells cloud computing services in China with local partner Beijing Sinnet Technology.

Earlier this week, Alibaba also announced plans to invest $15 billion in global tech research hubs.

Related: Red Hat Linux now Runs on Microsoft Azure

Alibaba’s Aliyun cloud business is dwarfed by AWS thus far, but it is growing much faster, something that the brain trust at Amazon (AMZN) are no doubt watching. The availability of business-focused software from Red Hat could help Alibaba entice more businesses to put workloads on Alibaba’s cloud.