Distribution Central’s unified communications arm, Vivid Systems, and its vendor partner, Avaya, are ramping up their investment and channel activity within the unified communications (UC) arena across A/NZ.
The two companies invested in a new campaign, which has been in pilot mode for the past six months, targeting unified communication and collaboration into the SME market.
Last year, Avaya purchased video conferencing and telepresence vendor, Radvision and integrated its Scopia video conferencing technology into their portfolio.
During the trial phase, it attracted about 30 resellers, and Distribution Central managing director, Nick Verykios, said in order to be successful, it would need about 400 actively engaged resellers in selling UC.
“We’re looking to put video in everyone’s hands and we’ll be doing that by finding new resellers that probably are already on our books selling other products,” he said. “We’re going to the reseller and we know who they are. If we missed any, we’re more than happy for them to come to us.
“We’re not just presenting intriguing technology, but we’re allowing customers to perform a critical activity that they otherwise couldn’t. This is where the reseller’s SLA comes to life, they’re not just making money out of services. They’re now differentiating with these SLAs and we’ve got the critical success factors.”
Verykios said it will be specifically focusing on the SME market.
“With collaborative communications, particularly if it has a video component, has been targeted at the enterprise in the past, which is probably one of the reasons why this country has lagged in the adoption of video,” Verykios said. “This campaign is squarely focused on the SME, particularly the medium market, which includes verticals like hospitality, medical, transport and health.”
Verykios said it was currently transforming its business with upgrades so resellers can use Distribution Central’s and Avaya’s facilities for demonstrations.
It has a $1.1 million combined budget that Avaya and Vivid are using to invest in people, seminars, training, infrastructure, advertising and the Avaya League campaign.
Avaya A/NZ managing director, Tim Gentry, said it was working closer with Distribution Central to educate and enable resellers in the market.
In the past few quarters, Gentry said it maintained 54 per cent, 60 per cent, 46 per cent and 58 per cent growth within the SME market through working with Distribution Central. It previously did about 60 per cent of its business through distribution, but this has now shifted to 84 per cent.
“We’ve made a concerted effort to leverage the channel community,” he said. "We’ve added about 38 new partners and we’re adding 34 per cent more forward facing people such as channel representatives, territory account representatives and lead generation. We have to feed and fuel the channel to make sure they can keep growing.
“The people we’re bringing in are very consulting-led, engaging with our distributors and channel partners.
During a recent roadshow, it trained about 110 people within its partner community - 70 in Australia and 40 in New Zealand. To become an accredited video partner, resellers are required to train one systems engineer.
Vivid Systems APAC general manager, Andrew Assad, said most of the partners it was demonstrating the technology to were non-UC partners.
“These were networking people that didn’t have anything to do with the UC space, and the reason why were doing it was because they were leaving money on the table,” Assad said.