Channel set to pig out on slew of new EMC products and service

Channel NewsChannel Strategy

Vendor aims to give channel products and services

Using an analogy about the relationship of the chicken and a pig to a traditional fry up, former Intel guru and now with an incredibly long job title at EMC*, Pat “Kicking” Gelsinger, explained that whereas the pig is “totally committed,” to the components of breakfast the chicken is more of a supplier.

And in terms of the channel, guru Gelsinger decoded, EMC used to be more of a chicken in the relationship with the channel than a pig. Going forward, he pledged, EMC will be more of a “pig”.

Speaking to up to 3,000 assembled channel partners at its Global Partner Summit segment of EMC World on Sunday, Gelsinger backed up his Zen-like pledge with numbers and explained that in two years EMC has grown its channel ecosystem from 1200 to over 5000 and that 50% of the company’s revenue is now generated by channel partners.

This figure is expected to rise to 60% next year. For sibling company, VMware, 85% of revenue is delivered via channel partners.

And it’s never been a better time to be an EMC channel partner, according to Gelsinger who is largely seen as being responsible for bringing the first EMC channel only products to market since joining EMC from his 30 year stint at Intel.

And this go to market strategy has continued this week with the announcement of a slew of channel centric products and services that are aimed not only to help EMC customers accelerate their migration to cloud and especially “Hybrid” cloud but also transform their own business to be able to cash in on the not just move to private cloud and public cloud but also applications and services to help manage and mine big data and also around security of data and back up.

“Violently disagreeing” that everyone will turn to Google and Amazon for cloud services, Gelsinger shared EMC’s vision that there would be hundreds of thousands of private clouds and thousands of public clouds where end users will use cloud technology to get better efficiency and lower costs of their own data and datacentres and chose their own trusted service provider.

When customers need peak demand they will look to see what public solutions offer according to EMC Chief Executive, Joe Tucci who thinks the debate versus public and private cloud is “silly”

Tucci, who gave his keynote to EMC customers on Monday, predicts that customers “want a world of both nor or”. Anyone who is suggesting a “One Size fits all” is “way off pace.”

Because of this “manically-focussed” belief on Hybrid cloud, the company also disagrees that the traditional hardware and infrastructure business will be squeezed in the short term by cloud adoption, because many end users are still in the process of looking at what they want to keep private, outsource and use from public offerings.

The market, according to EMC, is actually getting bigger as start-ups and new entrants to the market may leapfrog traditional infrastructure and adopt cloud services at a fraction of the price of previous investment IT requirements.

Here’s the science part:

Aimed at customers, looking to build virtualised, private cloud networks, EMC has launched its new channel only VNXe3150 box that it claims offers 50% more performance and capacity per rack unit.

EMC has also unveiled its Cloud Builder, Cloud Provider Practices and Cooperative services for partners that successfully complete the company’s designation requirements. These will be rolled into its Velocity Service Provider programme, announced last year, which has also been tweaked to recognise advanced levels of skills in pre-sales, sales and services.

As it sounds, Cloud builder enables partners to design, build and manage cloud infrastructures while Cloud Provider will offer partners the ability to offer their own-branded ITaaS offerings and get cloud training and Cloud Architect certification. Cooperative services will offer partners health-check and assessment services for virtual environments.

Partners that qualify will also get access to other EMC services such as Storage-as-a-service and Backup-as-service.

Overall the company is set to announce 42 new products at this year’s EMC World across storage, backup, virtualisation and management technologies.

One partner looking forward to being able to re-brand EMC kit with his own brand is Rick Eddings, professional services vice-president at US partner Sigma Solutions: He said:
“With more customers transforming their data centres to deliver an IT as a Service model to their businesses, our services business is growing at a phenomenal rate. Acquiring the right skills and capabilities to scale our services and expand our portfolios as fast as we want is a constant challenge”.

With EMC’s box and Sigma’s brand, Eddings thinks he can further strengthen his relationship with his customer and boost long term loyalty.

One unattributable reseller partner close to the company told Channel Biz “The theme of this year’s conference is Transform and in terms of the channel this has been a wholesale transformation. And for the channel is a change for the better.

“In the old days at EMC, when a bell rang on the sales floor to register a win, an EMC sales man would have to stand up and say “we win again” followed by a colleague that would stand up and say “We all ways win!

“Today the mantra with partners is more like: Let’s win together.”