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Adobe shifts revenue goalposts for Aussie partners

Adobe shifts revenue goalposts for Aussie partners

Vendor raises revenue requirement for Certified partners and contacts customers directly

Adobe has moved the goalposts for its certified partners, upping the required annual revenue requirement to resell the vendor’s most popular products.

As a result, it is understood that the tech giant has dropped up to 220 Australian resellers from its certified partner tier to its registered tier, with sources indicating that it has instead reached out to customers directly.

The company’s reseller program consists of four tiers: Platinum, Gold, Certified and Registered. Sources told ARN that the revenue requirement for Certified status was raised from $20,000 to $75,000 at once. Adobe has disputed this claim, remaining tight-lipped on the exact figures.

Adobe notified affected resellers on 23 January 2017 and the change came into effect on 4 March 2017.

In a letter to a reseller seen by ARN, Adobe said that its Certified partner status was being revoked.

“Upon evaluation of your FY16 revenue attainment, you have not met the minimum revenue requirements of a Certified Partner, as defined in the Adobe Partner Connection (APC) Reseller Program Guide.

"As a result, we regret to inform you that your APC membership will be downgraded to Registered, in accordance with the terms published in the APC Reseller Program Guide,” the letter said.

The Registered level allows resale of Adobe “shrinkwrap” products as well as the vendor’s TLP Commercial, Government, and Education licensing programs.

Crucially, Adobe Registered partners are ineligible to sell Adobe’s Cumulative Licensing Program (CLP), and Value Incentive Plan (VIP) programs, these are the most popular Adobe products and consequently, the most lucrative for partners.

In addition, the company sent a letter directly to customers informing them that they would have to deal direct with Adobe from now on to renew subscriptions

“Effective 6th March, 2017 your reseller [name redacted] will be unable to transact your Adobe VIP subscription orders.

"Up until this time, you can continue to purchase new VIP licences or renewal orders with your current reseller.

"To ensure that your Adobe software will continue to operate without interruption from the 6th March 2017, your VIP account will be transitioned so that you can order directly with Adobe,” the company said.

In a statement to ARN, the company said: “Adobe carries out yearly reviews of partner attainment in accordance with the Adobe Partner Connection program. In the event Adobe determines that a partner no longer qualifies for their current membership level, Adobe may assign the partner a new level based on their current qualifications.”

The vendor has increased the prices of its popular software suite from $528 to $1,056 in less than two years, in a push to migrate customers from its on-premises solution to the creative cloud suite, a move which has resulted in the company’s best financial results to date.

Adobe has a chequered history with channel engagement, taking big deals direct and letting partners - particularly smaller transactional ones - deal with renewals, now it is taking renewals for its most successful products away from resellers as well.

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