FileMaker on Tuesday launched the FileMaker Business Alliance, a program for organizations providing FileMaker solutions, and the FileMaker Technical Network, a community for database developers.
Together, the programs replace the FileMaker Solutions Alliance program, members of which will be migrated to the new programs.
Ryan Rosenberg, vice president of marketing and services at FileMaker said there was a need for new programs that would differentiate the two communities.
"Ten years ago, people used FileMaker as a good, rapid application tool. Now it's a more sophisticated product with a much larger environment of people who have built businesses" developing and deploying solutions, Rosenberg said, adding that the company "is always recruiting new VARs."
The FileMaker Business Alliance, with approximately 1,200 partner organizations, offers sales support, volume discounts, an assigned account manager and access to FileMaker's Biz Talk online community. Business Alliance members can also add staff and even consultants to the FileMaker Technical Network, which provides technical resources and forums, as well as free, demo and pre-release software access.
Rosenberg also described new technical initiatives to extend FileMaker functionality, including a public beta of an API connecting FileMaker and PHP Web servers and a demonstration of connections between FileMaker and MySQL databases.
"These directions increase the scope and type of solutions that partners can offer on FileMaker. It makes FileMaker very relevant in a Web world," he said.
Membership in the FileMaker Business Alliance costs $499 annually and subject to approval by FileMaker. The Technical Network costs $99 per year and is open to all developers.
Running on Windows and Mac OS X, FileMaker is the No. 4 best-selling relational database, according to the CRN Channel Best Sellers report. The Santa Clara, Calif.-based company is a subsidiary of Apple.