LAS VEGAS – IBM introduced five new channel competencies at its PartnerWorld Leadership Conference aimed at furthering Big Blue’s cognitive computing era.
The new competencies promise to create new revenue streams for channel partners as well as increase speed to market. They join 36 previously announced competencies that came with the redesign of the PartnerWorld program that launched on Jan. 1 this year. This puts the number of areas partners can build expertise in to over 40.
Following the theme of the PartnerWorld Leadership Conference, these new competencies further the software company’s agenda in regards to the cognitive computing era. Big Blue placed a large focus on Watson and cognitive throughout the conference, and it wants its partners to do the same. These competencies will help do so.
“As digital and cloud solutions continue to transform industries, the time is now for our partners to deliver cognitive solutions with deep vertical expertise built on the IBM cloud platform and made available in an omni-channel environment,” said IBM global channel chief, Marc Dupaquier to channel partners at the event.
Dupaquier likened competencies to a university course structure. For instance, if you go to school you take a number of classes, but ultimately end up taking a major that encompasses all of those core classes. At IBM, the classes are the product, and the competencies are the major.
“We’ve expanded and redesigned the PartnerWorld program to guide [channel partners] of all types and models in developing capabilities aligned to our cognitive solutions and cloud platform strategy,” said Dupaquier.
The five competencies are as follows:
- Security: Information, Risk, and Protection in order to protect customers’ critical information.
- IBM Cloud: Cloud Video to help customers stream, capture, manage, and deliver video; and High Speed Transfer to bring cost savings and efficiency gains to customers who need to move large volumes of data over public and private IP networks.
- Watson Internet of Things: Continuous Engineering to help engineering innovative products and systems in the face of complexity.
- Financing: IBM Global Financing to help partners main-stream “financing” as a core capability they can use to differentiate themselves.
Additionally Big Blue has added enhancements in four areas in order to accelerate growth in the IBM ecosystem.
It has launched the Embedded Solutions Agreement that will make it easier for partners to integrate their expertise and offerings with IBM offerings to create unique, partner-branded solutions, and bring those to customers. An offering called “Ready for IBM Cloud” is a new validation designed to encourage ISVs to build and monetize their cloud solutions on the Bluemix platform.
Later in Q2, Big Blue is launching IBM Express Start to simplify the channel processes for partners. It authorizes partners to resell IBM entry-point products, and make it easier for partners to go about these processes in the PartnerWorld portal.
Lastly, starting in April IBM will enhance its channel partner software incentive offerings to provide the “highest rewards for the highest value focusing on IBM’s Commercial segment, new client opportunities, solutions, and autonomous selling.