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New style of IT needs a new style of partner

HPE CEO Meg Whitman

LAS VEGAS Hewlett-Packard Co. is pitching a new style of IT, and it’s looking for a new style of partner to help bring it to market.

And for a new style of partner, HP has a new style of partner program. At its Global Partner Conference held here this week, the vendor announced an expanded framework for its PartnerOne partner program. Instead of just including resellers, now distributors, service providers, systems integrators, independent software vendors an original equipment manufacturers will all join resellers under the PartnerOne umbrella.

“We’re seeing an evolution in the industry,” said Patrick Eitenbichler, director of marketing for HP PartnerOne strategy. “A couple of years ago, a reseller was a reseller. Most of them didn’t also host cloud services, or have software applications to differentiate themselves. With hybrid IT becoming more of an interest, resellers need to expand beyond their boundaries.”

Previously, partners would have needed to join different programs for each engagement model with HP, but now PartnerOne will be the common foundation, with allowances for each partner type’s differences, to make it easier for partners to do business with HP across business models. Platinum, gold, silver and business partner will be the tiers across partner types.

The changes will also mean simplified contracts, with the goal being one program agreement with a guide with specific rules for each engagement motion. A single partner relationship management system will be possible as each partner will have just one partner ID, and the marketing development funds (MDF) system will be simplified with one portal.

Also new is HP PartnerOne for Cloud, which aims to support partners deploying hybrid cloud solutions.

As well, resellers with business in multiple countries will get new support for multi-country business, including common pricing, import and export support, and partner program status in different countries. Eitenbichler said the changes are designed to help partners support deals that are multi-country in nature, not compete with local partners.