LAS VEGAS – EMC Worldwide channel chief Greg Ambulos had a tough act to follow during the Global Partner Summit of EMC World. Ambulos addressed channel partners shortly after the crowd watched John MacLean get up from his wheelchair and walk across the stage. MacLean was paralysed 26-years ago after being hit by a truck at 110 KM/Hr.
MacLean, an Australian triathelete, told his incredible story of personal transformation and how he had to redefining himself several times.
Ambulos told a story of business transformation and how EMC is redefining itself with the channel community. It wasn’t that long ago when EMC had more direct business than indirect. Today, 60 per cent of EMC revenue goes through the channel.
At last year’s Global Partner Summit Ambulos brought in more stability in the Business Partner Program with new tools and a dedicated team for the solution provider community intended to minimize risk for the channel. The Hopkinton, Mass.-based vendor also introduced the Cloud Partner Connect Program to address the opportunity with cloud computing.
That was backed by an expanded product portfolio that includes new data protection, converged infrastructure and flash solutions.
“It’s one of the fastest growing platforms in the market and let’s face it the lines for the partners are blurring. Today we have system integrators re-selling and resellers in the managed services game. It’s like white water rafting and you need to read the river right or you will be left behind,” Ambulos said.
At EMC, the company itself is going through a big transformation from selling boxes to introducing solutions aimed at staying ahead of the all the new market dynamics. The EMC Business Partner Program was designed to be more predictable and profitable for the channel and to improve the overall experience with dealing with EMC and its Federation companies.
“Its the first time solution providers will have one revenue, all-in goal with hardware, software and services. They will also have the freedom to sell all of it to the customer and be rewarded from dollar one,” Ambulos said.
The Business Partner Program pays solution providers and distributors rebates for each dollar earned in sales. Initially less than 50 per cent of EMC partners we earning these rebates, but a year later all the partners involved are achieving the rebates offered, according to Ambulos.
“You sell something; you get something. There are flexible benefits now and we simplified Co-Op so that it can be leveraged across the entire portfolio,” he said.
EMC also told partners that they are going to open up parts of its consulting services business for the channel to sell and deliver.
Dave Frederickson, senior vice president of CDN Top 100 Solution Provider Long View Systems of Calgary, was impressed with how the Federation is coming together with the channel linking areas of big data, infrastructure, VCE and Pivotal around modern application development. “The whole approach by working in a custom fashion with clients to more forward is ingenious. Otherwise its take companies a lot longer to cross into the digital space,” Frederickson said.
The Cloud Partner Connect Program has also been enhanced with more incentives for solution providers and distributors to retire quota quicker and get additional rebates, Ambulos said.
This coming year Ambulos is asking the partners to make more investments aligned with enterprise hybrid cloud, data lakes and security. The key change from a year ago is VCE is now part of the Business Partner Program and will mirror the current program benefits.
Certifications will be easier for channel partners as they will not ask solution providers to go to separate training for VMware, VCE or any other Federation companies. Those that get certified will be branded “Federation Ready” and achieve new levels of lead generation, Ambulos added.
EMC also created a deal registration desk with more stringent rules of engagement to protect partner transactions.
There is also a new pilot program for loyalty called EMC True. EMC True will offer channel partners who do 80 per cent or more with EMC in backup and storage additonal rebates and training certifications. Approximately 10 per cent of EMC Silver, Gold and Platinum partners have already qualified for EMC True.