XChange Events

XSP Day 1, Mar 5, 2012

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THE OFFICIAL SHOW DAILY XChange Daily Microsoft: More Money In Your Pocket NEWS AND EVENTS FROM XCHANGE SOLUTION PROVIDER By Jennifer Hagendorf Follett Microsoft revealed plans to launch the next generation of one of its most pop- ular partner incentive promotions in a move that could mean more dollars in solution providers' pockets. The latest version of "The Big Easy" kicks off March 5, providing subsi- dies on qualified purchases that cus- tomers can use to purchase additional software and services from their part- ner of choice, said Cindy Bates, vice president, U.S. Small and Medium Sized Businesses, at Microsoft, during a keynote address Sunday at XChange Solution Provider. "A check will be sent to [custom- ers] with your name on it to use for services from you," Bates said. The program, which runs through June 30, provides rewards of up to 30 percent for on-premise annuity-based solutions and up to 15 percent back on cloud- based annuity offerings, she said. Non-annuity solutions also are eli- gible for the promotion, meaning "the full spectrum of solutions you bring to your customers can be tapped into," she said. The rollout of the new program comes as Microsoft is encouraging partners to find ways to take advantage of the growing consumerization trend taking place in many corporate IT en- vironments as growing numbers of em- ployees bring personal devices to work. "Increasingly, we will all be con- nected to the people, information, apps and services we need ac- cess to, and in a split sec- ond be able to share that data as well," Bates said. David Geevaratne, president of New Sig- nature, a Washington, D.C.-based solution pro- vider and Microsoft part- ner, said the infiltration of consumer devices into the enterprise is pervasive. "It's totally real. In my customer base, every- one has their own mobile device in some shape or form, whether it's a smartphone or a tablet. IT is struggling with how to get those devices to cooperate in a Faletra: Reap Recurring Revenue Rewards By Scott Campbell More solution providers are adding a mix of off-premise solutions to their on-premise offerings, according to new research from UBM Channel. "Those are [companies] not just thinking about the old model: get a solution, get a check and move on. They're thinking about recurring rev- enue," said UBM Channel CEO Robert Faletra in his opening keynote. In February, 70 percent of solution providers were on a path to offer both on-premise and off-premise; they are defined as Progressive. In August, 62 Faletra: Move on from the old model. percent were on that path, the study found. Solution providers planning to continue to offer only on-premise so- lutions, defined as Vintage, declined from 20 percent to 17 percent in that time frame, he said. Meanwhile, the mix offering only off-premise solutions, defined as Transformative, also declined from 20 percent to 17 percent in that time frame. That's likely due to Progres- sive solution providers trying to transi- tion but backing off because there's not enough business yet to sustain it within their existing infrastructure, Faletra said. Faletra brought three solution pro- viders on stage to share their stories. Paul Hilbert, owner of Network Doctor, said there has been no short- age of customers since he built out his DAY ONE Monday, March 5, 2012 Hyatt Regency Century Plaza Los Angeles, Calif. New version of 'The Big Easy' incentive promotion for annuity and non-annuity solutions set to debut today All In: 'The full spectrum of solutions you bring to your customers can be tapped into,' says Microsoft's Bates. corporate environment, and how to make them secure and manageable," Geevaratne said. infrastructure to bring clients in-house. "Turning [capital expenditures] to a monthly expense for the client is more palatable to them," Hilbert said Ira Bell, CEOof Nimbo, has built a $6 million company in less than three years and is on track to double that this year by offering solutions around Win- dows Azure and Amazon. The biggest inhibitor to further growth is finding talented people, Bell said. Simer Mayo, president of Valor IT, which moved to managed services and then a more comprehensive hosted offering, said finding technicians that can also talk to customers is key. "We don't have salespeople. We're all sales- people in a way," he said. Photos: Kim Kulish

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