Posted on 5.9.2023

Lauri Ikonen, Former Head of Google’s Finnish Data Center, Appointed to Lead UpCloud’s Strategy and Operations

Lauri Ikonen joins UpCloud

UpCloud has appointed Lauri Ikonen as the company’s Chief Strategy and Operating Officer. Ikonen, who took the position on August 1st, has more than 15 years of leadership experience in service and project businesses at Google and ABB, among others. Ikonen will focus on UpCloud’s growth and scaling the company’s operations. 

“I have kept an eye on UpCloud for a long time,” says Ikonen. “In addition to an interesting story, the company has tremendous growth potential and strong capabilities to deliver on it. My positive impression has only been reinforced during my first few weeks with the company. UpCloud has a huge amount of talent from different backgrounds and a genuine interest in evolving with its customers.”

According to Ikonen, UpCloud differentiates itself from competition with world-class customer service that cannot be found elsewhere. The goal of UpCloud’s high-performance solutions is to ensure that customers succeed – and sleep well at night assured that the 100% SLA guarantees seamless continuity for business-critical operations.

As a European player, UpCloud’s entire product portfolio meets all EU data protection and privacy requirements. The role of privacy and security is set to become increasingly important when more and more data lives in cloud platforms. 

“The hyper-trend of digital transformation continues, and AI will profoundly shape our everyday lives. Cloud services have long been dominated by large US-based players. Now, companies, especially those in regulated industries, are showing interest in European alternatives. In the future, I see UpCloud as part of the core infrastructure that will enable our customers to run their business in Europe,” explains Ikonen.   

From Football Fields to Leading Change – The Passion for Strategy Was Always There

Ikonen is an experienced strategist, who likes to harness data and analytics to gain insights and business advantages. He has always been fascinated with the idea of understanding what lies on the horizon. To Ikonen, the world is filled with data and signals that can be used to build surprisingly accurate future scenarios – if only you know where to look.

“Strategies have always been close to my heart. In my youth, I spent hours on football fields trying to create the winning strategy. And that’s what strategy is at UpCloud as well – a game plan that helps us to understand the direction and crystallizes concrete actions to grow faster,” Ikonen explains. 

Before joining UpCloud, Ikonen worked for seven years at Google, most recently leading the hyperscale data center campus in Hamina, Finland. Prior to that, he had a ten-year career at ABB, the last six of which he spent leading various power systems related service businesses in Finland. 

“I believe my background brings understanding on what the next stage of growth means for UpCloud, so we can continue meeting and exceeding our customers’ expectations. My experience in leading change and developing organizational culture helps us to maintain balance while scaling our operations. As a people person, I strongly believe that fostering company culture, diversity, and the success of our teams builds our competitiveness,” he says. 

In his free time, Ikonen prioritizes spending time with his children, taking their Cocker Spaniel for walks in the forest, and nurturing his artistic side with drawing and photography. And when the curiosity towards data, numbers, and predicting the future sparks, he likes to take some time and review the annual reports of interesting companies.

Artur Wikström

Digital Marketing Specialist

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