Avema, based in Toronto and Lincolnshire, Ill., has provided telecom expense management consulting since the mid-1990s. It has now partnered with several MDM solutions vendors, such as Toronto-based Echoworx and consults with companies as to which solution is right for them. Avema then can provide assistance with deployment and technical training.
“We see that it’s a new area that has become urgent really quickly,” said Roger Yang, the company’s CEO, especially with the popularity of bring your own device (BYOD) policies among businesses. It happened so suddenly that a lot of companies are kind of caught off guard, he said, providing a major opportunity for vendors and resellers who can offer MDM deployment and training.
Now, VARs can partner with Avema to add those MDM consulting capabilities to their own portfolios. They can bring in Avema’s consulting practices for certain customer deals or rebrand its offerings as their own. There is no fee to be part of Avema’s channel program.
“We think it’s a way to address a need for their customers,” Yang said. “It will enhance their image” with customers as well.
Avema is looking to build its partner base over the next six months, but has no specific number in mind. “If we can find the right partners in specific verticals, that’d be really helpful,” he said.
“Their whole intent is to drive their solutions down to the SMB (small and medium businesses) through the partner channel,” said Michelle Warren, principal with MW Research and Consulting. VARs are critical to targeting smaller businesses, and therefore a large part of the Canadian market.
Avema’s partnerships with several MDM companies, rather than just a few, make it a potentially more attractive option for partners, Warren said. Its presence in both Canada and the U.S. is also an advantage, since it can target companies who operate in both countries, she added.
There are several existing MDM software companies out there who sell direct, or through telecom carriers. “The difference there is that a corporate customer will have more choice if they work with us,” Yang said. They can also receive preferred pricing on MDM solutions through Avema.
Avema has also worked with Research in Motion Ltd. since the early 1990s. Yang said it’s too early to tell whether the company’s recently announced Mobile Fusion MDM solution for BlackBerry Enterprise Server customers will be a success, but if it is, “it would be natural extension for us.”