Tag: partners

Hewlett Packard Enterprise updates Cloud28+

HPE-office-logoHewlett Packard Enterprise (HPE) has updated its Cloud28+ catalogue and will allow partners to  show potential customers what they have to offer.

The Cloud28+ member spotlight pages, were revealed at the CloudFest conference in Germany and will be available from April. For the first time  allow channel companies to publish their own news and updates, as well as search options and services, on the catalogue. HPE said that this will offer partners the opportunity to increase sales and revenue, as they will be able to build a “strong visual identity” on the platform.

More than 750 HPE partners are already part of the Cloud28+ community, HPE claimed, a catalogue of 26,000 cloud and hybrid IT services launched by the company in 2015.

HPE VP of service providers and Cloud28+ worldwide Xavier Poisson: “HPE is a partnership-first business. The new Cloud28+ spotlight pages demonstrate this, by offering partners new routes to market and increased visibility.

“Cloud28+ has always been focused on creating a rich and collaborative ecosystem, and now we’re further extending that benefit to partners by giving them a chance to do the same with customers under their own banners.”

Alongside the announcement of member spotlight pages, HPE also teased further upcoming enhancements to the Cloud28+ platform. These will include better management tools, social media integrations and individualised analytics. It will feature compatibility for multi-vendor and multi-component solutions, with IoT cited as a particular scenario where this would be desirable.

Microsoft partners generate extra cash

Microsoft campusSoftware King of the World, Microsoft claims that its vendor’s partners can generate extra revenue for every $1 that they gain selling Voleware.

For years now Microsoft has been telling the world+dog  how much extra revenue its partners can make selling additional products and services.

This year the number is $9.65 (£6.74) which is the extra money generated by the ecosystem for every $1 of Microsoft revenue.

The update on the vendor’s channel revealed that it now has 68,000 cloud partners, which was a 33 percent increase year-on-year and it has seen an 83 percent climb in the number of those transacting in the cloud solution provider programme.

There have also been 80,000 customer referrals to partners in the past year and a blog post sharing these numbers from Gavriella Schuster, corporate vice president, one commercial partner at Microsoft, talked up the growth to come.

“We generate more than 95 percent of our business through our robust and constantly evolving partner ecosystem. Last fall, partners helped us exceed a $20 billion commercial cloud annualised revenue run rate goal we set just two years ago”, she said.

Vole highlighted the success so far of its co-selling partner incentive with the 500 partners that have worked with the vendor so far just the first wave.

“In just six months with 500 partners, last year’s co-sell pilot generated $6bn in partner pipeline and more than $1bn in partner revenue. Project size was on average nearly six times larger, and partners closed deals nearly three times faster when we sold together. Since formally introducing our approach to co-sell at Inspire, more than 9,000 partners have become co-sell ready—a 543 percent increase since July—and that number continues to rise,” she claimed.

“As Microsoft sellers deepen their relationships with partners through co-sell conversations, they want to build and expand their practices across the solution areas, especially artificial intelligence. By 2025, the anticipated market in the space is expected to reach nearly $60 billion, so it’s a greenfield opportunity—and partners are already creating customer solutions in new and unexpected ways,” the blog said.

Citrix partners predict growth this year

1_Citrix-SignMost Citrix channel partners predict 2017 will see more revenue growth than last year.

According to Citrix, more than 88 percent of its polled partners across Northern Europe, including UK and Ireland, Denmark, Finland, Norway and Sweden where optimistic about revenue growth.

More than 71 percent said they are undergoing some kind of transformation, and 45 per cent were revamping their processes to keep up with industry changes.

Justin Sutton-Parker, Citrix partner director for Northern Europe, said that the IT industry was facing one of the largest periods of change since its inception, with new and innovative technologies disrupting the bigger players and driving increased customer churn.

“Despite this challenge, channel partners are forecasting a year of significant growth, with the cloud earmarked as a driver of such change.”

A third of partners think they will see revenue increases of more than 20 percent year on year thanks to bigger opportunities, and a fifth predict margins will increase as a result of customer demand.

The Cloud will be the primary growth driver, according to 71 percent of respondents, who said it will account for at least 10 percent of revenues.

More than 38 percent of respondents said they think cloud will account for 20 per cent of new business in the coming year. However, cloud drove less than 10 per cent of revenues for 60 percent of partners last year.

Emerging technologies such as AI, Big Data and the IoT may be too immature to experience the same sort of growth as the cloud, the survey found.

Just over half said the IoT is important, but 37 percent don’t believe it will make a difference to their business, and 12 percent won’t be selling IoT gear.

“Partners may be divided when it comes to the potential of emerging technologies such as Big Data and the IoT, but the message is clear when it comes to the delivery of cloud services. The time for action is now, and only by working with the right vendors can partners truly capitalise on this opportunity,” Sutton-Parker said.

Cybersecurity will be one of the leading growth areas for the channel in 2017. Over 90 percent of partners said they fully expect customers to increase spending on cybersecurity in the next year. The motivation behind this is increased governance and regulation, they said.

Department for Work and Pensions purging monster projects

dont-ignore-workplace-pensions-large_transkp2xaqpd1krf0u2yohg6we4d6c4a3w2q2xczuap8nk0The Department for Work and Pensions is “reviewing” shedloads of digital and technology projects, but denies the reason is a budget overspend.

According to Computer Weekly, hundreds of IT projects have been put on hold at the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) and 300 contractors been told to clean out their desks.

Up to 500 projects are under review, on hold or set to be scrapped.

Word on the street is that an audit of DWP’s accounts at the halfway point in the financial year revealed a significant overspend in DWP Digital, the department’s IT team. Numbers like £250 million have been bandied about but a DWP spokesperson has denied it:

“We routinely review our work to ensure that we focus our resources on the most viable options and deliver the best value for the taxpayer. This year we are on track to deliver record digital transformation on a scale larger than most FTSE 100 companies.”

Projects affected include a move to migrate applications away from existing HPE datacentres to the Crown Hosting Service set up by the Cabinet Office, and getting rid of ancient Fujitsu VME mainframes. Several IT suppliers to DWP have been hit.   Several thousand Microsoft Surface Pro laptops are “sitting in cupboards” waiting to be deployed as part of a major desktop overhaul.

There appear to be no lay-offs among permanent DWP staff who appear to be being used to take up the slack.



Flextronics helps Lenovo build euro servers

lenovo2Flextronics is to build up to a quarter of a million x86 servers in Hungary as Lenovo sets up its European operations.

Lenovo says the move will halve delivery times for European customers and partners. The servers for EMEA clients were previously built in Shenzhen in China will now be shifted to Sarvar in Hungary, from the summer.

Lenovo expects the Hungarian plant to assemble EMEA’s full allocation of up to 250,000 x86 servers annually once production is fully ramped up.

Assembly of Lenovo’s full range of storage and networking for datacentre environments will also now be carried out at the plant, which already produces Lenovo PCs and ThinkServers.

The move will boost service levels for clients, with delivery times being cut from two weeks to one, as well as saving on transportation costs. Until relatively recently, IBM built some of those servers in eastern Europe, meaning Lenovo is bringing production back to Europe. Mostly due to transport and logistical considerations.

Within a year, almost all of the approximately 250,000 x86 servers Lenovo builds for the EMEA market will be made in the Hungarian plant.  This will allow UK partners more flexibility in how they manage inventory and will also improve the after-sale service they can offer.


IBM to spruce up channel

ibm-officeBiggish Blue has released details of its revamped channel programme which will start in January 2017.

Apparently the men in suits want to better define the relationship a partner has with IBM and have a common terms used across its channel programmes.

Like most things IBMish this will involve lots of business speak. For example IBM is standardising on the term “competencies” and will have 44 “competencies” in place by the beginning of 2017.

IBM will have new cloud incentives that last the entire life of the renewal process and there will be a programme that specifically rewards builders of IBM embedded systems.

Some new IBM services will only be resold by channel partner. These will be aimed at midmarket customers that the IBM direct sales force does not normally bother with.

IBM wants to put more cash into its channel and give resources to partners that develop its intellectual property.

To fund those investments, IBM is also limiting the amount of money it invests in partners that focus mainly on order fulfilment.

Partners will be assigned a platinum, gold or silver designation based on the amount of revenue being generated over a specific time period, customer satisfaction with that partner and the number of competencies attained. The actual size of the partner will be less relevant in attaining those designations.

Microsoft and partners defend against Chromebook

windowscomputexThe glorious Wintel alliance which is still running despite a few hiccups has a cunning plan to see off the threat of Google Chromebooks.

Microsoft and its chum Intel plans to launch a device running Windows 10 with Bing.

Microsoft and Intel are working with all   partners to bring cheaper devices to the market and help tackle the growth of Google Chromebooks.

Stage one of the plan is to release a cheap OEM version of Windows 10 with Bing.

As was the case with Windows 8.1, Windows 10 with Bing will be a Windows 10 SKU available exclusively for PC makers and will be offered at a very low cost or even free of charge.

Microsoft has worked out that it needs to slash licensing fees that manufacturers need to pay for installing Windows on their devices.

Windows with Bing is basically Windows 8.1 with Bing offered the same features as Windows 8.1 but came with Bing branding that OEMs could not change.

Users, however, were allowed to replace Bing as the default search engine with Google or something else.

A Windows 10 with Bing flavour will appear later. In fact Windows 10 is designed to be installed on as many devices as possible, and Microsoft expects one billion PCs, tablets, and smartphones to be running it by 2017.

Cisco warns partners of IoS skills shortage

ciscologoWhile everyone is talking up the Internet of Things, network giant Cisco has cleared its throat and pointed out that there is a huge skill shortage based around the technology.

Speaking at the Cisco Partner Summit, the outfit’s vice president for Industry Solutions Group, Steve Steinhilber, said that the IoT market will be worth $19 billion by 2020 – $14.4 billion of which will come from the private sector, and $4.6 billion from the public sector.

He claimed partners were getting a 40 percent annual boost to their Cisco businesses through selling IoT kit, but said the skills gap is a pressing concern.

He said that for Cisco and its partners this is a genuinely new available market. But one of the big gaps in the next three to five years is a tremendous shortfall in skills.

“You have people coming from the operational technology space and people coming from the IT space so you need training on how these worlds are going to merge. For Cisco, just in the industrial [vertical market], we see a shortage of 300,000 people with the right skills across the globe.”

In the past nine months, Cisco has trained 38 partners globally as IoT Specialised partners, and another 94 are currently going through the process, Steinhilber said, adding that this should start to fill the gap.

“We’ve begun rolling out a series of programmes,” he said. “Over the next 12 months you will see a serious of other unique training courses focused on industry-vertical skills.”

Cisco promises partners a sticky end

 honey1Cisco Systems executives have been promising their channel partners that its Cisco ONE Software Suite will be stickier than a hive of bees who stuck super glue on their feet and went skating on the honey combs.

Cisco ONE (Open Networking Environment) is a software licensing program that provides flexibility for customers to acquire the latest software for infrastructure. Yes, apparently, you can be sticky and flexible at the same time; we looked it up.

The networking supremo appears to be removing the la carte method with separately priced products it has also removed the concept of a software license being tied to hardware.

Under the new system, Cisco ONE covers data centre, WAN and network access software as a subscription. Later this year Cisco ONE will offer perpetual licenses and hearing aids for those who were damaged by Cisco shouting ONE at them all the time.

John Brigden, senior vice president of software strategy and operations for Cisco, said all this means that Cisco is now in the business of flogging “business outcomes” instead of products.

Cisco ONE provides flexibility and drive greater deal sizes as well as more margin incentives through the Value Incentive Program (VIP), OIP, and TIP, he said.

For the channel it prevents multiple sales cycles because it is software tied to maintenance and support with SmartNet brings in a more predictable revenue stream.

“This is very sticky for partners.”

Dell hosts Euro channel jamboree

Softcat in Paris with Dell, 2013Hardware giant Dell claimed its two top channel tiers, PartnerDirect, and Premier and Preferred, grew by 29 percent in the last year.

Michael Dell, the founder of the company, told attendees that there are now 1,174 Premier and Preferred level partners in EMEA.  He said the channel continued to be important to Dell’s strategy.

Dell claimed that PartnerDirect, including the online solutions configurator has been adopted by over 600 partners across 10 companies.

Michael Dell said: “We see our partners as a core part of our team, our strategy and our future, and we will continue investing to grow our business together.”

Gongs were handed out to UK company Softcat, winning UK partner of the year and platinum partner of the year. Pictured are Laurent Binetti, Greg Davis and Michael Dell himself. Michael Dell is second from the left and we don’t know which one is Laurent, which Greg and we don’t know who the others are. Sorry.

Ingram Micro signs Jabra deal Down Under

IMIngram Micro has had gained another client Down Under, signing on the dotted line with communications company Jabra.

As part of the partnership Ingram Micro will be responsible for distributing the company’s range of call centre and office products within the Australian and New Zealand market.

This includes the recently launched Jabra Motion, which is designed to suit mobile workers with an everyday need for audio conferencing or hands-free calls, in the car or at home using smart devices.

Jabra says that Asia-Pacific is one of its fastest growing markets for unified communications products. It said it was critical for it to establish strong relationships with distributors across A/NZ that could add significant value to its proposition.

The company believes that its collaboration with Ingram Micro will also be beneficial in reaching a larger reseller database and in particular Cisco channels.

The company has also extended its support to its partner network with a launch of the Jabra Business Tool, an iPad sales app, which provides information on Jabra’s business services.

Ingram Micro promotes channel love-in

IMIngram Micro has opened its doors to 350 channel partners from across the globe.

The distie has hosted what it claimed is its first International Solutions Partner Invitational in Hollywood.

The event, which began on 8 May and runs until today saw partners fly in from North America and Latin America, as well as Europe, Asia Pacific, the Middle East and Africa.

It is sponsored by 15 technology vendors including Signature Sponsors Motorola Solutions and Psion, now part of Motorola Solutions, and Platinum Sponsors Axis Communications, Elo Touch Solutions and Intermec.

Themed “Mix it Up,” the Invitational is claimed to try and inspire the 600-plus vendor and reseller partners in attendance to think about business differently in 2013, and seek out new markets and  service opportunities that will help them grow faster and more profitably.

The event is also claimed to offer channel partners insight around industry best practices and market trends including where the markets are heading and what channel partners need to do to better position their business for success now, and in the future.

Throughout the event, attendees will hear from speakers including Scott Deming, a customer service and emotional brand building expert, Juliann Larimer, vice president of worldwide channels and sales operations for Motorola Solutions and Paul Bay, president, Ingram Micro North America.

It will also feature new Ingram Micro vendors, including TSC Printers and APG Cash Drawer, as well as more than 20 ISVs from across the Americas.

Avnet extends marketing initiative

avnettsAvnet has extended its Socialondemand service in the UK.

According to the distie, since the marketing initiative launched in April 2012, seven supplier partners and over 150 business partners have joined up.

It said in the last nine months 353 media posts have been reposted by business partners achieving click-through rates of up to 50 percent, with more than 86,000 downloads and retweets.

Initially introduced with Microsoft, Avnet socialondemand is a social media service which syndicates and disseminates targeted social media content from Avnet supplier partners to the social media connections of its business partners.

Avnet claims it’s able to input, categorise and target social media content and then control and track what, when and where it is published, for example, via business partners’ Facebook, LinkedIn and Twitter accounts.

Linda Patterson, marketing director, at the company said Avnet and supplier developed content went further and allowed partners to decide how and when to target customers, while tracking exactly when, where and by whom the content is being read.

She pointed out business partners often had stretched resources particularly in terms of their use of social media and yet they appreciate its value.

Avaya loves its partners

Hands across the waterAvaya is moving to help partners and disties speed up access to its portfolio of unified communications, contact centre, networking, and SME products.

The business communications and collaboration systems and services company has announced that it will be rolling out its Avaya One Source globally.

It’s also announced three new Avaya Aura suites of UC, mobility and collaboration applications that help simplify pricing and the delivery of UC applications.

According to the company, the suites make it easy and cost-effective for channel partners and customers to select and deploy the right mix of UC capabilities across their entire workforce.

Avaya One Source is said to speed quoting and ordering of all Avaya products through more efficient pricing, processes and tools.  New automation capabilities, real-time access to standardised pricing, and an integrated and centralised web-based system is also claimed to significantly reduce order cycle times, enabling channel partners to deliver quicker responses to customers.

The service is said to be available to all 9,000 Avaya Connect channel partners and will also include simplified global pricing and discounting reduces 1,400 Avaya material price groups to 13 and combines over 200 separate pricing catalogs into one.

Avaya One Source is already deployed in key regions throughout the world, with full deployment planned for all countries in Europe, Africa, the Middle East and Asia Pacific by July.

Canon touts compact imaging

Canon logoCanon is helping its partners make the most of the increasing demand for compact imaging products.

It has launched two new compact black-and-white multifunctional devices (MFDs) as part of its  ImageRunner Advance range, which it claims will create new revenue opportunities in the desktop capture and output market.

According to the company’s recent Office Insights report, value and cost of MFDs were found to be the most important factors in the purchasing process for 34 percent of decision makers, followed closely by reliability – 20 percent and output quality – 18 percent.

Canon said its new devices helped bridge this gap and also added to its partner’s portfolio.

The new ImageRunner Advance 400i and 500i A4 devices have output and capture capabilities in a compact design claimed to provide users with smarter ways of working.

End-users can print from any Google Cloud Print enabled web-connected device, or scan to and print from the iPad, iPhone and Android mobile devices. The Uniflow platform is said to offer configurable document workflows to larger organisations or more demanding environments.

Uniflow also provides a secure platform for users to print from any device to any networked MFD.

The ImageRunner Advance 400i and 500i devices will be available across the UK & Ireland from 1 May 2013.