3Com brings back channel rebate scheme

3Com will launch the local iteration of its new global Focus Partner Program in March next year, giving resellers access to lucrative sales rebates and marketing development funding.

Channel director, Dean Vaughan, said a partner's eligibility for the rebates and marketing assistance would depend on a combination of criteria, such as certification levels, trained staff and revenue. These would be reflected in its gold, silver and bronze tiers.

"The level of certification a partner achieves is linked directly to the rebate program," he said. "The more specialised they get and the more trained engineers they have, the higher the rebates."

3Com had maintained a channel rebate scheme in the past, but dropped the program in January in favour of introducing marketing development funding.

Vaughan said the latest changes would present resellers with a mix of both worlds.

The new program would also pull 3Com's specialised partners and its traditional channel into the one structured program, he said.

The new schemes also coincide with the launch of two new specialisations: enterprise wireless and enterprise switching. These would site alongside its existing security and voice certifications, Vaughan said.

Although several partners had already undergone wireless and switching product training, Vaughan said the two would now be formalised courses. Training programs are carried out by 3Com staff and run for about three days, followed by an exam.

To obtain a specialisation, partners need to have at least two technical engineers certified, as well as a member of the sales staff.

Vaughan said there was no official cut-off date by which partners would be required to meet the new training requirements.

"Our whole strategy is to motivate partners with incentives to get trained up in the technologies they want to deploy," he said. "We will balance these requirements with our training times."