Storage vendor, NetApp, has appointed Niamh McDonnell as its national channel manager. She replaces Steve Bracken, who has taken up the business development manager role at its data encryption subsidiary, Decru.
McDonnell will be responsible for developing further strategies and programs based around its VIP program. Launched in August, it sees resellers divided into authorised, gold and platinum levels.
"We now have a very structured program and a clear direction on how we can add value to our partners' business," she said. "We are investing heavily in the channel and are very serious about our growth initiatives."
McDonnell said one of her main aims was to grow NetApp's channel business from 20-50 per cent of its revenues within the next couple of years. The vendor currently has five local platinum partners that it services directly - Dimension Data, XSI Data Solutions, Fujitsu, ASI Solutions and Volante. It aimed to increase this number to 10. The rest of its resellers now buy through recently appointed distributor, Avnet.
"We want focused partners who can play in the markets that we see as our biggest growth areas - storage and management, SAN, backup and recovery," she said. "We want our dealer community to understand our message around simplifying data management, which is what we are all about. We need partners that can understand and deliver on that."
Another key focus was to provide partners with broader marketing programs. These will include road shows, campaigns and lead generation. McDonnell was previously NetApp southern channel manager for two years. She has held other channel roles at LAN Systems and Sybase.