EXCLUSIVE: Riverbed to cut reseller network, adjust channel program

Thirty per cent of partners to go as part of consolidation

Riverbed worldwide channels senior vice-president, Randy Schirman (left) and Riverbed A/NZ channel director, Joe McPhillips (right).

Riverbed worldwide channels senior vice-president, Randy Schirman (left) and Riverbed A/NZ channel director, Joe McPhillips (right).

As part of a global channel program initiative, IT infrastructure vendor, Riverbed, is looking to cut nearly a third of its 165 channel partners in Australian and New Zealand (A/NZ) in order to consolidate its network into a value-added ecosystem, according to Riverbed A/NZ channel director, Joe McPhillips.

McPhillips told ARN that about 30 per cent of its partners in the region will be axed.

At the same time he noted that “Riverbed is always looking for partners, but is not going on a partner acquisition path.”

As such, the company will continue to look for potential partners which can bring value to Riverbed (and to which Riverbed can return value), while eliminating those who do not provide the desired quality.

Value-added pricing

The move is the trickle-on result of a change in Riverbed’s distribution program whereby it is introducing ‘value-based pricing’ system to A/NZ.

Implemented in the Americas three years ago, the concept looks to move away from treating each distributor through the same framework regardless of whether they have made hefty skillset investments or whether they are line of fulfilment organisations.

Instead, through this ‘pay for performance’ model, Riverbed is introducing a combination of front- and back-end incentives defined by the capabilities of the distributors.

“We want distributors to become an extension of us in terms of helping partners build capabilities and skillsets, and expanding our footprint,” Riverbed worldwide channels senior vice-president, Randy Schirman, said.

“As they build and develop their partner communities, the more of that which they offset which we normally would, the greater the benefits and rewards they receive.”

Schirman said the same approach will soon be introduced to the partner level as well.

Riverbed’s Australian distributors are Distribution Central, Avnet, and MTech.

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