New NetApp chief leads channel revolution

New NetApp chief leads channel revolution

Network Appliance's newly appointed A/NZ managing director, Peter O'Connor, is leading a complete overhaul of the vendor's channel program.

O'Connor told ARN 80 per cent of NetApp's Australian sales were made up from direct deals.

"It's completely inconsistent with the rest of NetApp's global sales which are made up by at least 75 per cent channel sales," he said.

Since joining NetApp at the end of July, O'Connor has overseen the Australian launch of the vendor's VIP channel program and has also signed on its first Australian distributor. The program is split across four different product categories and tiered according to a reseller's level of commitment. Under the program, resellers receive rebates, training and joint marketing campaigns.

"We need more emphasis on how we can align ourselves with the rest of the global NetApp bases in terms of our channel push, and launching the VIP program is one way," he said. "In a nutshell, the VIP program is NetApp's commitment to the channel in terms of getting serious about achieving goals together."

NetApp would continue to maintain relationships with a couple of core tier-one resellers, but was looking for new partners to come in via distribution, he said.

O'Connor comes to NetApp with 20 years experience in the IT industry, working for companies such as System Software Associates and IBM.

Before joining NetApp, he was vice-president Asia-Pacific for Macromedia (now Adobe), where, over four years, he was responsible for building Macromedia's channel relationships and boosting worldwide sales.

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