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New solutions drive new partner programme

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Kathy Gibson reports from VMworld in Barcelona – VMware’s new vision of one cloud; any application; any device offers new opportunities for reseller partners.
Jurgen Kuhlewein, senior director: EMEA channels and general business at VMware, says that the vision, and the need to deliver the software-defined data centre (SDDC), has seen a need for VMware to transform its partner business.
“We used to have vSphere as our only product; and one channel,” he says. “Today we have multiple products and multiple channels; and we need to help partners to collaborat with one another.”
Now that the server virtualisation business has become more commoditised, the focus has shifted to cloud and SDDC offerings, so partners need to step up and provide more value in solutions sales, Kuhlewein says.
“This is one of the areas we are looking at now,” he says. “In February this year we announced the professional services partner programme, which is a very important move for us.
“To be able to deliver the SDDC that customers need, we have to have partners who can step up in their sales and pre-sales consulting side skills so they are able to deliver services on behalf of VMware.”
The new programme has been piloted over the last 10 months, and will be rolled out shortly.
Professional partners will be tiered on three levels: professional partners; enterprise partners; and premier partners.
“The premier partners will be able to consult about the technology as well as business outcomes,” says Kuhlewein. “The higher a partner goes on the tiers, the more certifications we expect; and the partner will also get the appropriate benefits.”
Kuhlewein believes that VMware has a mandate to deliver a framework that gives partner consistency and predictability. “If you are not predictable as a vendor, partners cannot plan with you they will battle to be successful and profitable.”