TORONTO, ON — Partnerships were the name of the game at OpenText Enterprise World. Although no new programs for the channel were announced, the message was all about alignment.
“Without our partners, we’re not going to hit the scale and the breadth of what we’re doing,” said Jennifer Kerr, vice-president of global partners and alliances. “This week our message is really about making sure we have alignment with them in the field. We really see the partners as an as an extension of our field.”
She said that the announcement that OpenText Corp. has expanded its partnership with Google Cloud, and that Google has named OpenText as its preferred partner for Enterprise Information Management Services (EIM) allows partners who were waiting to see where OpenText was going in the cloud to direct their efforts accordingly.
Chief executive officer and chief technical officer Mark Barrenechea emphasized, however, that this move will not take away from the OpenText Cloud, nor will it bar other cloud providers. There will be three flavours of cloud: First, the OpenText Cloud, then the Google cloud services, which will be jointly supported by Google and OpenText, though OpenText will provide the public face of support. Other clouds will be supported, but the engineering integration that Google and OpenText enjoy won’t be there.
“We weren’t born in the cloud, like some companies, but we are reborn cloud. OpenText Cloud Edition is about a cloud-first option. Being containerized, it will run anywhere. It will run in the Google Cloud platform. We are going to support all platforms,” he said. “Our Cloud Editions will be certified on our cloud and all the hyperscalers.”
While the announcement of OpenText’s move to put EIM in the cloud in the April 2020 release provides potential opportunities for the channel, Kerr said that no new programs have yet been revealed. “We have to get into the cloud first,” she said. “And then you put the channel play on top of that.”
One thing she does know is that there will be separate certifications for on-premises EIM and cloud EIM; the company has already begun offering foundational training about the OpenText approach to the cloud.
“Positioning it in the cloud versus positioning it on-prem is different,” she noted. “It’s very different. I think that’s what customers are learning on their journey. As they move to the cloud, it’s a different kind of opportunity for them as well.”
There’s also potential for other opportunities for partners in OpenText’s newly announced partnership with Mastercard, which will be offering access to spot financing early next year through the Mastercard Track B2B global trade enablement platform to automotive clients of the OpenText Business Network, a managed service that can be sold through resellers. Mastercard EVP, enterprise partnerships, Claire Thompson said that there are already ongoing discussions about expanding the program to other verticals.
OpenText customers preferring on-premises deployments will continue to be supported as well. Barrenechea said that choice is key: the company has committed to maintaining on-prem versions as long as they’re in demand.
“I think that we’ve spent a lot of time putting a lot of programs and framework in place. But we’re now at a maturity level with our relationships where we’re taking it to the next level,” Kerr said.