Storage vendor, EMC, is preparing for a major increase in SMB resellers as it introduces big changes to its partner system for 2011. It also plans to double its channel-dedicated headcount.
According to EMC channel manager, Chris Moyle, one of the most significant updates will be the introduction of the entry-level “Affiliate Partner” tier for its program. This will be aimed at SMB resellers, who only need to complete free online training programs to join.
The move will increase the number of tiers from three to four. Affiliate Elite will be the second-level, Premier the third and Signature the highest tier of all.
“Where we’re looking to add partners is where the biggest growth opportunities are…we’re not over servicing our market, we’re just expanding our coverage to be able to take advantage of the opportunities.
“That’s also why we’re not planning to significantly grow our Premier and Signature partners because we’re mindful of not wanting to dilute their opportunities.”
Another major change is the introduction of four new “core speciality” paths that partners can follow; Consolidate, Advanced Consolidate, Backup and Recovery as well as Governance and Archive.
“Partners can (use the paths to) better differentiate themselves in the market place,” Moyle said. “It basically means partners are recognised as having superior competency to sell, architect and implement a particular solution portfolio.
“Having qualified for the specialisation, they will be entitled to rewards and benefits around the speciality such as rebates and training.”
The channel manager also confirmed that Signature Partners would not be able to purchase direct and claimed this would not lead to an increase in prices.
But when asked if he could guarantee delivery times for stock would remain the same, a spokesperson said it was a question for distributors and not the vendor.