Symantec renews channel commitment

Symantec renews channel commitment

Symantec has announced two new enterprise initiatives for resellers to open its product range up to the channel. The changes follow its $US6.7 billion acquisition of storage software vendor, Veritas, in June.

In line with plans to bring Veritas products downstream, regional channel director, David Blackman, said it would now open up its enterprise renewals business to all resellers working through distribution. Previously, only Veritas Elite partners were entitled to sell renewals to enterprise customers.

"About 40 per cent of our revenue every quarter is from renewals," he said. "It's higher on security software than on the availability side."

In addition, the vendor's Enterprise Vault Solution, which was only sold direct or via its Elite partners, was now available via its distribution channel.

The new partner incentives were introduced during the Symantec Vision conference in Sydney last week. Blackman said the key message behind the changes was to further illustrate its commitment to the channel.

"We are focusing more on driving this business back through partners," he said. "It helps to maintain customer loyalty and the trusted status of the partner. We want to be partner friendly."

While keen to pursue opportunities through existing Symantec partners who were already familiar with Veritas products, bigger growth would come from pushing both product lines through resellers who may not have experience in security or availability software. This could see the organisation take on additional partners, Blackman said.

"We have a cross-section of partners selling both [product lines]," he said. "The bigger opportunity in the channel is for those selling one or the other. As we integrate our solutions, there will be an opportunity to up-sell existing customers."

Blackman cited email integrity as one hot technology area. He claimed that the integration of email security with archiving presented channel partners with new ways of delivering services to customers.

Symantec was also planning to roll out a new global partner program early next year. This would see current Veritas Elite partners and Symantec Security Solutions partners consolidated under one model.

All resellers would be divided into platinum, gold and silver tiers, Blackman said. The vendor was now deciding on the set prerequisites for entry at each level. These would be based on things like revenue and the number of certified engineers.

To help enable partners to complete multiple product sales, he said it would introduce a range of new training initiatives in the coming months. These would range from instructor-led courses to Web conferences.

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