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Top Stories in November: Intelisys Awards, Lumen, Frontier’s Emergence

As the calendar flips to December and you get entrenched in the holiday season, your mind is still on some of the top stories from previous months.

That’s right — a few of the blurbs in our recap of November’s top stories will look familiar. You read them once and came back for more. (OK, you probably haven’t read them more than once, but they’ve had some real legs overall online.)

Take the Windstream and Frontier bankruptcies, for instance. Windstream announced its exit a couple of months ago, but our audience still wanted to read about it. And our story about Frontier’s planned chapter 11 exit in January, which we published in October, cracked our list again.

Despite the tough year, the channel celebrated successes last month. Intelisys, for one, identified its top suppliers, channel managers and partners.

Technology was top of mind. You wanted to learn about Palo Alto Networks’ new 5G security offer. You also wondered why Apple didn’t make its new iPads 5G-compatible.

OK, so if you’re thinking, I wouldn’t have picked any of those stories, well, you can do something about it. Our countdown consists of the most popular stories on our website and in our weekly newsletters. Subscribing to our newsletters is easy.

So which of the stories listed above was No. 1? Or was it something else entirely?

Once you’ve clicked through the gallery below to see what was No. 1 among our top channel stories for November, take a trip down memory lane. Check out last month’s countdown, which featured a flap over AT&T DSL and a new channel chief at Windstream.

Follow executive editor @Craig_Galbraith on Twitter.

Datapipe's Robb Allen

#12 — Intelisys Honors Top Sales Partners

Master agent Intelisys celebrated its top sales partners, vendor partners and channel managers for top performance in 2020.

The story, which published right at the end of October, noted how Intelisys partners ID'd 8x8 as their favorite supplier. That's two year's in a row for the UCaaS provider. Partners also chose Spectrum and RapidScale as their top cable and cloud providers, respectively.

See the entire list of Intelisys honorees.
AT&T appoints Sarita Rao

#11 — Lumen Partners Get Bigger Payouts

Lumen, formerly CenturyLink, is changing its channel-integrated engagement (CIE) policy. While that on the surface might not sound riveting, cutting the CIE tax rate from 30% to 15% on new sales means more money in the pockets of Lumen partners.

The change takes effect Dec. 1. Senior vice president of indirect sales Garrett Gee says the change will drive sales opportunities for partners in conjunction with Lumen’s direct sales team.

In other Lumen news, the company is expanding its partnership with Zoom to include a new offering. Zoom Delivered by Lumen brings together Lumen’s platform with Zoom’s collaboration products and services.

Read more about bigger commissions and opportunities the Zoom deal offers partners.

Johnson, Tanner_Omdia

#10 — Windstream Exits Bankruptcy

Bankruptcy and rebounding from it continue to be hot topics as the year comes to a close.

With so many Windstream partners in our audience, it's no surprise that our story from September on the communication giant's chapter 11 exit continued to draw eyeballs last month.

The company also introduced a new logo and enhanced value proposition around its enterprise, Kinetic and wholesale businesses.

Read more about what it means to partners.
Racial reckoning

#9 — Channel People on the Move

It wouldn't be a top 12 countdown without our monthly feature of new hires and promotions in the channel. This edition featured moves at Windstream, Broadvoice and T-Mobile.
CwCJ Logo 2020

#8 — Lisa Miller Joins Spearhead Advisors

It came as a surprise to many to learn that top CenturyLink channel exec Lisa Miller was no longer with the company. 

But it wasn't surprising at all to learn that she landed in a new prime channel position. Miller is the new president and chief operating officer at Spearhead Advisors. It's an IT consulting organization that serves enterprise customers. It's also a Lumen-led master agent.

Get more information on Miller's new gig.
Frontier's Javier Mendoza

#7 — Gartner's UCaaS Magic Quadrant

Rankings are always popular among our readers. So is the clout that Gartner's Magic Quadrant carries.

Thus, you were curious to learn that Gartner listed Cisco, 8×8, Microsoft, RingCentral and Zoom as "leaders" this year.

Want to know who Gartner considers challengers, visionaries and niche players? It's hereThen see who analysts we talked to mentioned as major players in UCaaS.
Barry Williams of Comcast Business

#6 — Layoff Tracker: COVID-19 Edition

You know the old adage, "if it bleeds, it leads." Well, Channel Partners readers are no different than the general public when it comes to gloomy news. It grabs your attention.

The latest edition of the Channel Partners layoff tracker focused on job cuts since the onset of the pandemic. They ranged from IT titans Dell and HPE, to telco giant AT&T.

See who lost their jobs where.
Murphy, Jim_Broadvoice

#5 — Forrester's SD-WAN Kudos

Remember what I said earlier about the popularity of rankings? And Gartner's Magic Quadrant? Well, apparently you're also a fan of Forrester. And UCaaS isn't the only thing that floats your boat; so does SD-WAN.

The research firm's study gave high marks in SD-WAN to AT&T, Verizon, Lumen, Aryaka and more.

Learn about Forrester's methodology and who else ranked among their elite networking providers.
Remote worker connectivity

#4 — Palo Alto's 5G Security

Palo Alto Networks dialed up a new security offering for 5G networks.

Dubbing it the “first 5G-native security offering,” Palo Alto updated several of its next-gen firewalls to account for 5G protocol and network interfaces.

The security provider said its 5G cybersecurity approach differs significantly from that of 4G, which “focused on securing perimeters.” 5G security must deal with the containerized, multicloud nature of the network.

Learn more
about Palo Alto's approach.

Galloway, Scott

#3 — Channel Conflict & Controversy

Like our layoff tracker (No. 6), we roll out a recap of the channel's biggest controversies every six months or so. And like usual, you were quite interested in all that watercooler talk (as if we hang around them anymore).

This collection of articles featuring tech's racial reckoning, FCC fines, bankruptcies, whistleblower cases and more got your attention.
Galloway, Scott

#2 — What, No 5G?

You'd think by now that the latest release of an iPhone or an iPad wouldn't be such big news. Maybe not, but an article we wrote in September about the unveiling of a new iPad was still getting your attention last month.

That might be because of what that new iPad doesn't have — 5G capability. We covered the controversy, then quelled your fears when we later reported that the new iPhone would work on 5G networks. Business users and consumers, rest easy.
Murphy, Jim_Broadvoice

#1 — Frontier Eyes Bankruptcy Exit

The most popular topic on Channel Partners all year – Frontier Communications' bankruptcy – was also our top story of the month in November.

In particular, it was our article on the company's planned exit from chapter 11 protection in January 2021. And if you're not convinced of the topic's longevity, this story debuted on our site back in October. Frontier's restructuring will reduce its debt by $10 billion.

“I am pleased with our continued progress in receiving state approvals and appreciate the constructive engagement we have had with regulators across our service territories, including our most recent approval in New York,” said Mark Nielsen, Frontier’s executive vice president and chief legal officer, in October.

Learn about Frontier's plans going forward.

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