Intel on Monday at Intel Solutions Summit in Las Vegas launched a new channel program that brings resellers and system builders together under a single program.
Intel's new Intel Technology Provider Program consists of three levels: Registered, Gold, and Platinum. Intel says the program aims to simplify the company's current partner-oriented efforts by integrating Intel's embedded and compute technologies, as well as its enterprise and consumer technologies, in order to reflect industry trends.
In a press conference at ISS, Steve Dallman, vice president of Intel's Sales and Marketing Group, said he spoke to many partners who claim their relationship with Intel has gotten weaker even as they've been selling more Intel technology. "They asked why we were abandoning them, why we were leaving them behind. We're putting this support in place for them," he said.
The program includes face-to-face training opportunities, a new Platform Workshop in which Intel will roll out its new architectures for partners to work with ahead of time, and the Virtual Intel Channel Conference. Intel will also offer self-paced online training to partners in all three levels.
With the new program now in place in North America, and coming to Europe in the next month or so, Dallman said it's important for Intel not to bite off more than it can chew and to focus on a successful transition until it receives initial feedback from customers at the end of this year.
"A lot of the things we're talking about aren't immediately available," Dallman said. "But we'll take feedback from our partners and apply it to the program."
Dallman said Intel will avoid channel conflict by maintaining a balance between adding new partners to its program and allowing its partners to maintain their status. "At the end of the day, we know they trust us," he said.
The Platinum level, the highest in the new Intel Technology Provider program, will involve benefits attached to volume, Dallman said. But while scale is important, the program is designed to allow anyone who truly wants to participate to have the opportunity, he added.
"I don't have a problem with someone at the Gold level not feeling special anymore," he said. "For some of the partners who will be on the Platinum level, it's like a long-term marriage. We're making sure the benefits scale with them. Platinum members are getting no less from Intel; in fact they'll be getting more in some cases."
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