Channel Champions: 10 Best Vendors For Financial Factors4:00 PM EST Wed. Apr. 28, 2010
For this year's Channel Champions awards, solution providers picked the top companies in the area of the financial rewards, including such factors as competitive pricing, increase in sales, amount of product margins, SPIFs, and rebates received and the amount of services attached to the sale.
The results showed that if solution providers sold nothing but networking products, storage, or some combination of both, they'd probably be a richer group of people.
Six of the top vendors were in the storage business, while three of the winners were in the enterprise networking hardware business.
VARs who want to go where the money is are going to Juniper. They voted Juniper not only as the enterprise networking vendor with the best financial rewards for the channel, but the one with the best financial rewards across all of the vendors included in the survey.
Overall Financial Rewards Score: 77.6 (1st place, Enterprise Networking Hardware)
Close on the heels of Juniper is rival enterprise networking hardware vendor Cisco, which solution providers said gave them the second-highest financial rewards of any vendor.
While Juniper and Cisco may be rivals, both represent financial sweet spots for solutions providers.
Overall Financial Rewards Score: 77.4 (2nd place, Enterprise Networking Hardware)
Many consider EMC the largest storage hardware vendor, but solution providers said in the survey that EMC's storage management software business is where the real financial rewards come from.
Overall Financial Rewards Score: 77.2 (1st place, Storage Management Software)
Also in the storage business, but a world away from EMC, is Western Digital, which mainly sells bare hard drives and external storage devices built around those drives. Solution providers obviously like them, however, as Western Digital is their fourth-highest choice for financially-rewarding vendor.
Overall Financial Rewards Score: 77.0 (1st place, SATA Hard Drives)
Whodathunkit? Dell, which until recently was synonymous with "evil" to VARs because of its aggressive direct sales, received the fifth-highest score for financial rewards from those very same VARs.
Dell won its high rank in the enterprise network storage category. That makes sense, as its acquisition of EqualLogic gave it a ready-made channel which it has taken pains to nurture.
Overall Financial Rewards Score: 76.5 (1st place, Enterprise Network Storage, SAN or NAS)
Seagate, like arch-rival Western Digital, sells bare drives and external storage devices. Solution providers gave Seagate the sixth-highest score for financial rewards, showing that it is still possible to make money -- good money -- from what many consider to be a commodity product.
Overall Financial Rewards Score: 76.2 (2nd place, SATA Hard Drives)
When it comes to storage management software, HP is no slouch. It was second in terms of financial rewards to solution providers after storage arch-rival EMC, and scored seventh overall, making storage management software one of the best products for the channel to sell.
Overall Financial Rewards Score: 76.0 (2nd place, Storage Management Software)
HP's ProCurve networking hardware business tied with IBM for the eighth-highest rank in the list of vendors offering solution providers the best financial rewards. That should help HP as it marshals forces to butt head-to-head with Cisco over the future of the data center.
Overall Financial Rewards Score: 75.6 (3nd place, Enterprise Networking Hardware)
IBM's midrange servers are the most profitable of all the vendors' midrange servers, according to solution providers who responded in the Channel Champs survey. So much so, in fact, that IBM tied for eighth place overall in terms of financial rewards, quite an accomplishment given the competitive nature of the server market.
Overall Financial Rewards Score: 75.6 (1st place, Midrange Servers, more than $25,000 in price)
Rounding out the Top 10 list of vendors in terms of financial rewards to partners was Symantec on the strength of its storage management software. That is a big win for Symantec which, unlike EMC and HP, sells its software independently of any hardware offerings.
Overall Financial Rewards Score: 75.2 (3nd place, Storage Management Software)