FileNet Corporation is set to announce a new channel program that will push its Saros and Watermark document management and imaging software further into the marketplace.
Former Lotus Notes channels boss and now FileNet director of channels and alliances, Gordon Makryllos, is wasting no time in setting up the ValueNet partner program, based on FileNet's existent US scheme. FileNet has already appointed Southmark Computer Systems as the first member company, with others expected to follow after the program's official announcement in a few weeks.
"Southmark's the first one as part of this ValueNet partner program, and I think we do need a few more in terms of coverage," said Makryllos. He says FileNet will appoint far fewer business partners than with the last program he was involved with, the Lotus Notes Business Partner Program. "With the FileNet products you need a higher level of investment in skills, so we're looking for a much smaller set of partners."
While FileNet has previously used partners in the big six consulting firms as partners for its high-end products, Makryllos says FileNet's acquisition of products from Saros and Watermark has left a gap in its distribution strategy. "Certainly with the Saros and the Watermark acquisitions we need to look at a totally different channel, because we're talking about sales that range from a single $500 desktop licence to scores of licences." He said that in the past individual FileNet sales have netted an average value of around $500,000, a figure he expects to see drop in the light of volume sales.
He says the signing of Southmark is a perfect fit, given the company's national focus and expressed interest in getting into the document management and imaging business. "They've got a couple of interesting accounts they're working on, and I think it will be mutually beneficial. They are interested in addressing the workflow document management market, and working in partnership with our other partners, so it made lots of sense on both sides."