CenturyLink is preparing to expand its portfolio of business services a year and a half after buying Savvis, a company that specialized in cloud-based business services.

The company is currently beta testing its Savvisdirect set of cloud-based services and is inviting potential customers to participate.

The new services include providing on-demand virtual servers, a software-as-a-service (SaaS) marketplace, click-to-buy storage services, scalable application development platforms, and services configuration and management.

The cloud solutions are expected to be commercially available throughout North America later this year, the company said, with expansion into Europe and Asia in 2013. The services are appropriate for both the small and medium business (SMB) and enterprise markets, CenturyLink said.

Users can quickly get started with a credit card and gain instant access to the Savvisdirect interface for simplified control of their cloud services. Developers will have access to a broad range of server options, scalable storage and diverse availability zones. IT administrators will have one place to procure, configure and deploy cloud services.