LAS VEGAS – Just one week after signing a major distribution deal with Tech Data Canada, Dell Canada announces another significant partnership with a distributor. This time it’s with Ingram Micro Canada.
These back to back partnerships with the two biggest distributors in the marketplace signal Dell’s motivation to acquire more solution providers. According to sources, Dell Canada has roughly 1,000 Canadian solution providers and they have attained them mostly through Dell Partner Direct channel program announced back in 2007 when the Austin, Tex.-based computing giant changed its culture of direct selling to embrace the channel.
A high percentage of those channel partners are direct to reseller relationships and Ingram Micro Canada president Mark Snider told CDN that this is a new model for Dell in Canada. “The pickup has been strong for Dell and it’s because they are serious about going after channel partners who have not sold Dell before. This is a new model for the company and they are very serious about it,” Snider said.
Ingram Micro did initially announce a partnership with Dell back at the first VTN Invitational this year. In that announcement Ingram was authorized to distribute Dell in Canada. Snider said that Ingram Micro Canada worked with executives at Dell Canada to get ready for a second quarter launch.
Internally at Dell Canada, the subsidiary has made changes on how they incent reps to favour channel partners. Snider said that it’s still early but Dell is converting channel partners over to distribution.
In the past, Dell did not incent partners if they went through distribution. Now they are eligible. Also the Dell sales teams were not getting paid if partners went through distribution. Now they are.
“Those are the types of things we try and do to evolve and the last piece was removing those obstacles at distribution,” said Frank Vitagliano, Dell’s vice president of channel sales.
Vitagliano said the company is about to launch on its enterprise side with Ingram Micro. Vitagliano called this “a big deal” and it will feature the next generation Dell PowerEdge server.
He added that Dell’s overall channel growth is more than 20 per cent worldwide based on approximately $20 billion in sales through the channel. Currently, Dell’s channel business is about a third of its overall revenue.
From an Ingram Micro perspective, the distributor is readying two Canadian configuration centres in Mississauga, Ont., and in Richmond, B.C. to do build to order something that differentiate Dell in the marketplace. The Dell products available currently at Ingram will be the Smart Selection series including client computing devices such as Latitude notebooks, Optiplex desktops and its line of monitors.
The changes are also very good in that Ingram will have an opportunity to distribute Dell’s EqualLogic storage products. Dave Mason, the vice president of sales at Ingram Micro Canada said that they have full access to the Dell product portfolio include Dell’s software lineup.
“This is a validation of the distribution model. Companies like Dell who did direct to end user and direct to reseller by signing with us it is a validation of our business. I think we set a standard in the market and in some way the customer has forced them at some level to engage with us to improve service levels,” Mason said.
One of those service benefits is full configuration within 48 hours and next day in the Greater Toronto Area.
Ingram also announced that it has expanded its relationship with Dell rival HP to accelerate HP PartnerOne learning and certification initiative. The company also did a similar deal with Citrix and was named an authorized learning centre for the software vendor.