Japanese megabank Mizuho Financial Group has signed a strategic partnership with Google Cloud.

The company will shift some services to the cloud, after it experienced multiple major outages last year.

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– Sebastian Moss

"The global spread of Covid-19, along with megatrends such as digitalization, the aging population, and globalization, have led to significant changes in our lifestyles and economies," Masahiro Kihara, Mizuho's president & group CEO, said.

"To deliver on the needs of our customers in this new era, we're working with Google to enhance our operational capabilities, innovate across our online and mobile channels, and transform our corporate culture."

At first, the two companies will build a new digital marketing platform on Google Cloud that is integrated with Google Analytics. They will then develop new digital financial services offerings, including banking-as-a-service products.

They will also use Google Cloud's security engineering team to boost security, and 'adopt Google Cloud's culture' of innovation.

It is not clear whether there are any plans for Google Cloud to take over the core IT system, launched in 2019 after 400 billion yen ($3.6 billion) in development costs.

In February 2021, 4,318 ATMs stopped working due to a major IT systems failure. Two more issues occurred the next month, one of which was due to an issue with Hitachi equipment at its data center.

The outage delayed 263 foreign currency-denominated remittances for corporate clients, worth 50 billion yen ($411m).

In total between February and September, Mizuho experienced eight system failures, leading several senior executives to resign. The company also relies on Amazon Web Services for some of its operations - an experienced issues in September when AWS Japan went down.

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