"Having grown up in India, the idea that I would have the opportunity to talk to all of you as CEO of Microsoft was beyond my wildest dreams.
"Admittedly, my interests at that time were a bit more focused on cricket than on technology," he said at the Microsoft Windows Azure Cloud Conference, 2014 that was video- cast to a gathering of developers, business and technology decision makers and IT professionals.
"I believe the opportunities ahead for India with the Azure cloud platform are tremendous and I encourage you to seize all of them," he said.
Windows Azure is an open and flexible cloud platform. It enables quick deployment and management of applications across a global network of Microsoft-managed data centers.
"It is amazing though, to think of the advancement intechnology over the past few years and the opportunity for developers in India today," Nadella, an electrical engineering graduate from Mangalore University, said.
Nadella is the only third CEO after Bill Gates and Steve Ballmer in the 38-year old history of Microsoft.
"We are at a pivotal time in our industry- living in and developing for a mobile first, cloud first world," he said. Nadella , who joined Microsoft in 1992, had previously served as the Executive Vice President of Cloud and Enterprise Group.
Stating that Azure is a powerful platform for the entire Indian ecosystem of IT professionals, developers and start-ups to bring their applications to markets worldwide, he said: "It helps Indian customers leapfrog to the cloud, and accrue significant cost savings."
"It provides a unique opportunity for our partners to scale their business," he added.
"Now, more than ever, organisations require modern applications that deliver cloud-scale, while integrating the existing system through hybrid cloud capabilities," Nadella said
Stating that users rely on the power of the cloud to deliver rich new experiences on smart connected devices, Nadella said: "With Azure, we have an open and flexible cloud platform for you to build modern applications and to grow your cloud enabled modern business."
"We're seeing incredible momentum for Azure as the ecosystem expands to enable more services and capabilities day-to-day," he added.
Microsoft India today said that a significant portion of its growth in India in the last 12 months has come from its cloud businesses.
It said Microsoft is powering the cloud transition in India with Windows Azure and a set of comprehensive offerings across private, hybrid and public clouds.
"We are adding over 2,000 commercial cloud customers every month in India and these are customers across all industry sectors - banking, manufacturing, healthcare and media, and across large, mid-sized and small companies," Microsoft India Chairman Bhaskar Pramanik told reporters here on the sidelines of the conference.
Stating that with its large partner and developer eco-system, Microsoft is helping Indian organisations assess and transition to the cloud easily, he said: "Microsoft has 10,000 partners and engages with an ecosystem of 1.6 million developers in the country," he added.
Microsoft said it has been investing significantly to improve cloud capabilities among partners and developers.
Stating the firm has grown the number of its cloud solution partners by 200 per cent last year, it said: "The company has seen a 100 per cent growth in the number of independent software vendor (ISV) applications on Windows Azure and helped 1700 start-ups adopt Windows Azure."