VMware is initially working with 12 cloud services providers, all of which are required to have a channel program for solution provider partners, VMware's Waters said. That number is expected to expand to 40 by year-end, he said.
Some premier solution providers with deep relationships with vCloud services providers could also be listed among those who can redeem cloud credits, Waters said.
That is good news to Keith Norbie, vice president at Nexus, the Minnetonka, Minn., office of Dallas-based solution provider Stratos Management Systems.
The ideal situation is for solution providers to set themselves up as a cloud service provider that's able to redeem the cloud credits they sell to customers, Norbie said.
"It could be a big win for those looking for the advantage with their customers," Norbie said. "The biggest question now is, how to get on VMware's list of cloud service providers."
That may not be a big issue for those solution providers that have strong ties to cloud service providers.
One company already on the list of cloud service providers eligible to redeem cloud credits, Denver-based Peak Colo, is looking forward to turning its entire solution provider community into service providers eligible for the new program.
Unlike most cloud service providers, Peak Colo's entire business goes through solution providers that offer Peak Colo's services to customers under a white-label program, letting the solution provider go to their customers as a service provider.
Luke Norris, founder and CEO of Peak Colo, said that his company's business model is 100-percent channel, and as a result, it worked with VMware to help develop the cloud credits purchasing program.
Customers can purchase the cloud credits for use with on-premise and off-premise clouds, with solution providers getting appropriate discounts from the combined volume of both, Norris said.
And, because the solution providers are white-labeling Peak Colo's services, they have the advantage over other solution providers in that they can tell customers exactly what they get and for how long when they redeem their credits, he said.
"With other cloud services providers, customers don't know the pricing, SLAs, or what services they can get," he said. "VARs working with us can say to customers this credit brings this amount of service."
NEXT: Keeping Cloud Credits Working For Partners