PacNet shifts channel up the value chain

PacNet shifts channel up the value chain

Pacific Internet has split its reseller base into two distinct groups in order to reward those partners selling more volume.

The company has devised a new channel strategy with the help of Armand Hoitink, currently general manager of the acquired Hunterlink ISP, who has also taken up the post of acting national channels manager.

Hoitink has previously worked in several systems integration companies such Logical Solutions and Computer Systems Australia.

Pacific Internet Australia managing director, Dennis Muscat, said the company is looking to get a lot more yield out of what to date has been a flat channel program.

“Previously we cast a very wide net [to attract partners],” he said. “The program was based on commodity products and partners would earn a commission per connection.”

Pacific Internet’s channel will be split into two groups – the first will be ‘partners’, those integrators that sell Pacific Internet products and services as part of larger solutions. These partners will be accredited with either Gold, Silver or Bronze status, according to their sales volumes. The company will also offer these channels account managers to work alongside them in winning and fulfilling deals.

Every time a partner moves up a level in the accreditation ladder, the reseller will be entitled to more pre-sales and technical support, more access to Pacific Internet’s NOC (Network Operations Centre) services, more referrals and higher commissions.

Hoitink said a partner was eligible to a 50 per cent increase in their commissions on new connections made as a Gold partner.

Existing Pacific Internet partners will earn Silver status until the end of the year, and the sales volumes recorded in this period will determine their status from then on.

The second group will be dealers – those channels that sell packaged home, SOHO or small business packaged DSL products that make one-off sales and referrals. These will all be managed by one Pacific Internet channel manager, and will be offered incentives to sell higher volumes and thus move into the partner accreditation process as a bronze partner.

“The market has been changing a bit,” Hoitink said. “As broadband products become more popular, we are pushed to provide solution-based selling. We need to stand side by side with our partners rather than behind them.”

“We need to move up the value chain and do larger deals,” he said. “A systems integrator can get us into bigger sites, sites where an ISP is perceived as only being able to offer low level services.”

Muscat said much of this pressure to move up the value chain had come about due to the marketing power of the major telcos in pushing broadband connectivity.

“What [the large telcos] are trying to sell is volume at $60 a month,” he said. “What we are looking at is yield – higher grade products at multi-site locations. We no longer want pricing to be the differentiator.”

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