Quantum rethinks channel program

Quantum rethinks channel program

Quantum has revised its channel model in a bid to extend its market coverage for its SnapServer and M1500 storage products. The manufacturer this week launched Quantum Academy, a program designed to provide better sales, technical and marketing resources to the channel.

The move follows an internal restructuring in April this year, which saw the storage vendor amalgamate its disk and tape divisions, SnapAcess and Quantum ATL, into a single business unit called the Storage Solutions Group. Likewise, the new program adopts certain elements from the previous channel programs of these two business units.

Based largely online, Quantum Academy encourages resellers to sign on under one of two tiers; Premier and Registered. Once accepted, resellers will have access to a range of benefits such as discount pricing, marketing funds and training, according to Quantum Australia New Zealand general manager Simon Bills.

The training and support services will be provided largely by Quantum's distributors, ACA Pacific, Lan1 and Optistor.

Bills said the new program is designed to attract a broader set of resellers such as systems integrators, which traditionally uncover storage opportunities through network upgrades but have tended to shy away from pursuing the storage component of the sale through lack of storage skills.

Bills is confident the new program will attract new resellers and recognises a marked shift in the go-to-market strategy for the vendor. Around 18 months ago, Quantum attempted a direct sales model for its disk-based storage products. While it showed initial success, Quantum abandoned the model in favour of pushing sales through the channel. As a result, Bills said the company's direct sales force has changed roles to become business development managers for the channel; a move that should reduce channel conflict.

The Quantum Academy is currently underway in the US and plans for a Web site dedicated to Asia-Pacific partners is expected to coincide with the launch of the program.

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