D-Link takes channel program up a notch

D-Link takes channel program up a notch

New Premier Program aims to better support VARs across the SMB market

D-Link has introduced a new Premier Partner Program as part of efforts to grow SMB sales.

Marketing director, Maurice Famularo, said it would sit alongside its existing Empower reseller program.

"Empower program doesn't suit VARs and resellers specialising in specific markets. It is more for the online etailers and retailers. These guys are more interested in straight rebates and basic membership things like discounts on demo gear, training discounts and co-op marketing," he said.

"Premier is designed for integrators working on various projects. They are not just driven by rebates, but by having the right business skills to win customer projects - things like sales skills, technical ability, how to sell technology to customers as well as support."

Premier D-Link resellers will have access to dedicated business development managers (BDMs) and solutions architects, Premier branding and marketing support, NFR and demo equipment, discounts and financial incentives. To help support the program, D-Link has recruited several BDMs and pre-sales engineers in Sydney, Melbourne and Brisbane.

"We will customise business plans to each integrator," Famularo said. "This will include preferential pricing and certain rewards based on that agreement and hitting a target. It won't necessarily be by revenue, but could be by opportunities, for example."

D-Link has devised a profiling tool to help identify suitable partners and areas of opportunity. Famularo said it wanted to recruit integrators with specialties in other technology sectors, such as storage and security, along with vertical market expertise. Partners will also need to derive a significant part of their revenues from networking.

The vendor will restrict Premier partner numbers to 100 across ANZ. While the initial program is based on having a single partner tier, D-Link is considering introducing Gold and Standard levels later on.

"It's about building a bridge to get these guys [VARs] to take us seriously," Famularo said. "We are pigeon-holed by being in consumer, but we have always been an end-to-end networking provider. We need to clearly articulate this to customers and build our back-end infrastructure to support resellers."

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