Aastra beefs up channel engagement

Aastra beefs up channel engagement

The vendor has hired Tony Warhurst as its new channel manager as it looks to further develop its partner strategy in the Australian market

Unified communications vendor, Aastra, has hired Tony Warhurst as its new channel manager.

Warhurst has previously worked for companies such as Zultys, ShoreTel and CW Consulting.

He replaces Jason Finlayson, who has now moved on as the channel manager for Brocade.

Aastra managing director, John Ward, said it needed to appoint someone who understood the channel.

The vendor is looking to change its partner model to help grow its base as it introduces more new products into the market, he said.

Ward estimated it had about 60 active partners in the Australian market. One of its major partners is Telstra.

“I see a lot of our growth coming through new partners,” he said. “The plan is to double our business within two years.”

It also recently granted Anixter master distribution status. Aastra is also distributed through Lan1.

To help boost its partner efforts, the vendor is looking at introducing another partner tier to its program called Authorised Plus. It will allow resellers to sell a subset of Aastra products. Other tiers the program include Premium, Advanced and there is also a non-certified component.

“We’re changing the certifications and we’ll supplement with our abilities and support to help them service clients, so they’re not limited,” he said.

In December, Aastra will also launch its A700 product, which caters for the mid market in the 50 – 300 extension range. It has introduced new products into the market that cater for the 5 – 50 extension market called IntelliGate.

“It’s a whole new market sector for us and it is a place that we haven’t played in before,” Ward said.

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Tags unified communicationsTelstraAastraappointments

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