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Ingram Micro Delivers New Cloud Options to Partners

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Craig GalbraithINGRAM MICRO CLOUD SUMMIT — Tech distributor Ingram Micro has upped its cloud game by introducing new delivery platforms that the company says will make it easier for channel partners to establish and grow their cloud businesses.

Ingram Micro's Renee Bergeron addresses the crowd at the company's Cloud Summit in Phoenix on Tuesday.Ingram says these new ways of working with the company remove barriers such as Web development costs, sales and marketing resources, and in-depth expertise of cloud-computing services.

The most significant might be the debut of Odin Automation Essentials, which comes fresh on the heels of Ingram Micro’s acquisition of the Odin Service Automation Platform from Parallels. Describing it as “cloud automation in a box,” Odin Automation Essentials is designed to empower cloud providers to efficiently provision, manage and sell both cloud and self-hosted services through a single platform. It promises to help partners bundle Microsoft Office 365 and other cloud solution provider (CSP) services with their existing products.

“This is aimed at cloud providers who want to run their own platform and want to benefit from automating their cloud businesses,” Renee Bergeron, vice president, Global Cloud, Ingram Micro, told Channel Partners. Calling it ideal for Microsoft Tier1 authorized partners, Bergeron noted that it’s “auto-installed, auto-configured, takes a few hours and runs on a single server.”

Next is general availability of the Ingram Micro Cloud Store, previously launched in beta. It’s a partner-branded, hosted e-commerce store that directly connects to an IT service provider or MSP’s existing website. It features cloud services available on the Ingram Micro Cloud Marketplace.{ad}

Also new is a Cloud Referral Program, which allows partners to market and sell cloud services through customized banners and links featured on their website, and fulfilled through the Ingram Micro Cloud Marketplace. All resulting sales and complementary services are conducted by Ingram Micro under the partner’s brand; in return, the partner gets a commission for the referral.

These announcements are all part of the just-launched Ingram Micro Ecosystem of Cloud strategy, said Bergeron, who addressed a crowd of 1,300 attendees at the Ingram Micro Cloud Summit in Phoenix on Tuesday.

“Ingram will drive increasing connections linking …

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… various cloud service providers with channel partners who solve business problems with cloud technologies,” Bergeron said. “This is a game changer.”

What’s the best approach for each cloud partner? That depends on the solution provider’s needs, Bergeron told Channel Partners.

“One size doesn’t fit all,” Bergeron said. “We want our partners to pick the platform that best fits their cloud sales model.”

Ingram further is trying to make the cloud sales process easier by improving the functionality and ease of use of its Cloud Marketplace, including a new consolidated invoice option. Partners now can combine all vendor services into a single monthly consolidated invoice, and provide their customers with an easier way to manage subscription costs. Another partner-requested feature recently added to the Ingram Micro Cloud Marketplace includes vertical-specific cloud services for health care and small-business customers.

Follow senior online managing editor Craig Galbraith on Twitter.


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