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Arrow has more than a dozen other vendors/cloud services in the pipeline, but Burke stressed the focus will be on quality, not quantity.
“No one knows exactly how this will play out in the long term. We’re not trying to adopt the approach to hire as many as we can and throw them out there. We want to see what works and what doesn’t work. What are the services getting more demand? We’ll work with some best-in-class partners and go deep with vs. go wide with a lot of them.,” Burke said.
Arrow plans to launch a series of Webinars around cloud computing to help educate VARs on how they can complement current offerings. Subsequently, there will be more in-depth technical training, he said.
“They’re part of our professional services business unit, which also offers education, consulting and support. Those are going to be key enablers to help Arrow deliver cloud services to VARs and their end users,” Burke said. Sharon Hebert, business development manager at solution provider The Pinnacle Group, Stamford, Conn., said she’s excited over the Arrow/Verio relationship because leveraging a distributor for cloud services can help reduce her costs.
“As a company, we can do business with 10 or 20 different [vendors] and the management of that becomes overwhelming in the multiple programs you’re in. We have spent a lot of cycles with ISVs that ended up not working right. With Arrow, the relationships they bring are always vetted and we trusted their decisions. It takes the leg work out of being in multiple vendor relationships,” she said.
Gary McMonagle, senior account manager at The Pinnacle Group, said demand for cloud services has increased dramatically in the last six months.
“We’ve been running crazy with the whole market. I’ve seen more implementations going on and more opportunities. It’s an interesting idea and we’re thrilled Arrow and Verio have joined forces,” he said.
Arrow’s cloud intiaitive comes about a month after Avnet announced its own CloudReady program for VARs.