Verizon, CenturyLink, Extreme Lead New, Changing Channel Program Update

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The big telcos are fine-tuning their channel strategies in the backdrop of large acquisitions.

October’s channel program recap covers the efforts of suppliers, notably Verizon and CenturyLink, to best handle their respective marriages with XO Communications and Level 3 Communications. This is a chance to read what the channel chiefs themselves said about the progress of their integrations.

It was interesting to hear from Bill Hooper, who has led some significant changes within Verizon’s program.

But that’s not all.

As usual, you’ll see numerous stories about security vendors formalizing their indirect sales. We’re seeing more and more of these companies creating programs specifically for managed security services providers (MSSPs). And our recap runs the gamut of various markets from storage to SD-WAN.

Also, you’ll read an honest take from Infovista‘s channel chief on what vendors often mean when they say they’re partner-driven — and how often they actually follow through on their promises to partners.

Scroll through the slides below to learn about the new or enhanced partner programs in our industry.

Missed last month’s gallery? Check out the September edition.


The channel assets of CenturyLink and Level 3 Communications are on a gradual path to unification.

Garrett Gee, who led Level 3’s channel before eventually taking the helm of the combined company’s indirect efforts, said that although the companies are molding together slowly but surely, there are positive sentiments about the channel. Gee told a partner audience that he and his team elected to make speedy, yet decisive integration plans to put partners on the right path.

Read more of Gee's comments, which he made at Intelisys Channel Connect.

The carrier made a significant pivot to grow its indirect efforts this year.

Asked how Verizon could assist partners during its integration with XO Communications, Bill Hooper, the leader of Verizon's "out-of-franchise" channel, laid out a strategy to place channel managers geographical regions to help partners. Hooper said Verizon increased to 15 channel managers for the out-of-franchise channel.

He described at the same Intelisys event how his company simplified its approach.

Read his full comments.
Extreme Networks

Extreme launched a new online training program – consisting of competency-based curricula delivered in bite-sized video modules – for global partners 

The Extreme Dojo program has four levels of learning about Extreme’s business model, its solutions portfolio, vertical positioning and solutions-selling strategies. Extreme previously used the program for its employees.

Read about the Dojo program.

McAfee’s head of channel sales and operations for the Americas said his company plans to rebuild its partner program. Ken McCray outlined at McAfee's partner summit a road map going forward and new opportunities for partners. Cloud is one of the biggest stated opportunities for the security vendor.

McCray addressed changes in channel management in a Q&A with Edward Gately.

InfoSec Institute, a provider of IT security education and workforce security awareness training, launched a new partner program for MSPs, VARs and OEMs. 

InfoSec previously had a reseller agreement and would work with partners, but in a limited fashion. The company also recently hired a director of global channel sales to manage the program.

Read about the program.

D3 Security has its first strategic, global sales channel program.

The security orchestration, automation and response (SOAR) provider unveiled its Connected Global Sales Channel and Partner Program. Led by D3’s newly appointed channel executive, Peter Marini, the program aims to help VARs, distributors, managed security service providers (MSSPs) and system integrators (SIs) provide their customers with SOAR, incident-response and case-management offerings.

Learn more about D3's new program.

The network security provider launched its Managed Security Service Provider (MSSP) program and Tufin-as-a-Service offer.

Tufin now offers its solution in a consumption-based model after running the program in stealth mode for about seven months with both large and small MSSPs in a variety of global locations.

The company offers a network security policy orchestration solution that manages the security policies around vendors’ firewalls. 

Get details on Tufin's new model.
Ingram Micro

The distributor rolled out new partner enablement tools dubbed Partner Now and Partner Connect.

Partner Now is an online, on-demand business management portal for U.S. partners. Partner Now is designed to help partners engage, transact and manage their product sales, IT services and solutions from multiple vendors. Partner Connect is a new software-as-a-service (SaaS)-based digital marketing program.

Lynn Haber covered the announcements at Ingram Micro One in Washington, D.C.

The SD-WAN provider's channel chief told Channel Partners that the company is working to draw value-added resellers (VARs) and system integrators (SIs) into its program.

Infovista also announced a whole distribution agreement with TELoiP to bolster its North American channel presence and has been helping service providers plan networks with its “5G-focused solutions."

He drew a sharp contrast to how SD-WAN vendors – and vendors in general – describing the role the channel plays in their go-to-market strategies.

Jon Howes shared his vision with us in an interview.
Alert Logic

MSSP Alert Logic launched its new Partner Connect Program, designed to allow partners to accelerate revenue.

The program is said to increase the value partners offer to their customers that must secure cloud, hybrid and on-premises environments. The program also helps end users get the security services and expertise they need from the channel community that already serves them.

Edward Gately has the scoop.

The hyperconverged secondary storage provider announced "steep investments" in its partner program, in addition to a new service-provider track.

Partners can expect to see enhancements in enterprise incentives, partner training, a hands-on lab, partner development funds, marketing and the service-provider offering. The service-provider partner track is for cloud and managed services providers who deliver cloud and managed services on-premises, in their data centers, and across public cloud environments.

Read Lynn Haber's article on the subject.

Igneous, which provides unstructured data management as a service to enterprise customers and other data-intensive organizations, launched its first partner program.

The vendor says it is a 100 percent partner-driven company. Igneous explained that it will be working with VARs, direct-market resellers (DMRs) and MSPs to address the needs of industries challenged with managing unstructured data. 

Learn more about the company and its partner program.

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