At its Partner Accelerator conference in Johannesburg last week, Citrix announced a significant enhancement to its channel programme as well as its top partners for 2008.

As a new introduction to its Citrix Solution Advisor programme, the company says that CSA Authorised will make it easier for existing partners to expand their product portfolios and allow new partners to start seling Citrix products immediately with less upfront investment. These changes, it says, enable Citrix Solution Advisors at any level the opportunity to sell Citrix Delivery Center products while working toward certification requirements.
Prior to achieving certification, partners can earn full margins on the breadth of Citrix virtualisation and application delivery products. This allows partners the flexibility to offer customers a strategic, comprehensive solution for their immediate IT challenges.
“By allowing Citrix Solution Advisors to sell immediately upon enrolling in our programme, we are eliminating barriers and enabling them to more easily deliver virtualisation from the desktop to the data centre,” says Nick Keene, country manager, Citrix Systems South Africa. “Giving partners the opportunity to architect complete Citrix Delivery Center solutions, grow their business, and reduce the required upfront investment is a winning combination for Citrix and our partner ecosystem.”
Partners who invest in certification can realise the full benefit of the Citrix Solution Advisor programme. To make the certification process easier and more economical, Citrix partners can take advantage of low-cost, on-demand courses and virtual labs, reducing the expenses associated with downtime, travel and classroom training. Only those partners that complete certification are eligible to participate in Citrix Advisor Rewards, an industry-leading programme that pays partners up to 15% additional margin on qualifying product sales.  Additional benefits including technical support, on-going lead generation, and enhanced visibility on are also available to certified partners.
CSA Authorised will be rolled out in April 2009.
Rounding off the one-day conference, Keene announced the company's top partner performers in the following eight categories for 2008:
Most Improved Partner Award 2008 – Aptronics.
Citrix Partner of the Year 2008 – Smart Axess.
Best Channel Marketing Initiative 2008 – Smart Axess.
Largest Citrix Multiple Product Deal 2008 – Datacentrix.
Largest Citrix Revenue Deal 2008 – Aptronics.
Highest Citrix Partner Revenue 2008 – Business Connexion.
Highest Citrix New Product Revenue 2008 – Datacentrix.
Best Technical Competency Award 2008 – Business Connexion.