Launches new programmes for MSPs
IBM said it will be making a range of global changes to help its partners take advantage of cloud opportunities.
The move is aimed at helping the company’s cloud ecosystem to grow as well as help enable organisations to develop open standards products and services on IBM SmartCloud and PureSystems.
One of the ways to do this is through its managed service provider (MSPs) channel. IBM said it would use this sector of its business by delivering a defined set of technology products or services to clients with a pay-as-you-go model.
IBM, which saw Virginia Rometty, take over from Sam Palmisano as Chief Executive, said MSPs were largely leveraged by customers which want to take advantage of cloud technologies but lack the internal IT skills, resources and time.
It said for example, smaller hospitals are still challenged with adopting electronic medical records.
Many healthcare providers are turning to the MSP model, where an MSP can quickly help the small healthcare provider to build and manage a cloud service to process patient data and make that information available securely in the cloud, freeing up the healthcare provider to focus more on the patient.
As a result, and as part of IBM’s new strategy. the company is taking its collaboration with MSPs and its global ecosystem one step further by enabling them to build innovative services on IBM’s advanced technologies such as SmartCloud, PureSystems, and analytics.
It said it will also provide MSPs access to IBM experts at four new global centres in Shanghai; Tokyo; Ehningen, Germany; and New York City and offer a set of programs to support MSPs to help them build their brands, generate demand for their services, and grow their marketing skills.
MSPs will also have access to IBM’s 40 IBM “Innovation Centres” in 33 countries for what IBM calls joint client engagements. In addition, IBM claims it will launch a virtual briefing centre that will provide an ongoing forum for MSPs to share ideas and knowledge around industry challenges clients are facing today.
IBM says it has also thrown in a substantial amount, from its $100 million in marketing, which it says hopes will enable MSPs to receive advice on social media as well as other marketing tools, while its IBM SmartCloud will also enable MSPs to integrate the offering as an IBM-backed solution or under their own brand in the market built on IBM SmartCloud Enterprise to expand the services they offer.
IBM will also work with new MSPs to design and develop their data centre strategies, as well as offering affordable financing options through IBM Global Financing.
It says MSPs can acquire new technology and services to support their growth with flexible, affordable payment plans for IBM systems, software and services. This includes 12-month, zero percent loans for IBM Systems, Storage and Software.
The news builds on IBM’s recently announced sponsorship of the new OpenStack Foundation, an independent entity, to promote the project and open source cloud computing.