IBM swallows pride, launches new channel program

IBM swallows pride, launches new channel program

IBM's PC division has conceded it had its channel strategy wrong and has revealed a revamped partnering program aimed at remedying the situation.

In an about-face, Big Blue now wants to embrace large and small dealers from all over the country as authorised partners to attack the small and medium business market.

Phil Cameron, the new channels manager at IBM's PC division, showed an improved Associate Member Program to ARN yesterday. The former Toshiba sales manager and noted channel advocate has now personally taken charge of recruiting partners to buy through distributors and sell into the SMB space, currently dominated by white-box manufacturers.

Cameron said the new program, which he was hired to develop and administer, introduces four major changes to the existing plan that went by the same name. The four key areas addressed in the overhaul are tiering, education, incentives and support.

"There is a lot of people out there who think we don't support the channel. These changes are all about showing that we will be supporting the channel. I wouldn't be here if IBM was not committed to its business partners."

For ARN's full analysis of the new strategy, read next week's issue (March 20).

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