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Juniper does not plan to make the Trapeze wireless portfolio generally available to the Juniper channel.
Present Trapeze partners enjoy an intimate channel program already. Earlier this year, Trapeze cut some 40 VARs from its program and elevated 11 to a new Platinum level of the program, and there are now fewer than 80 registered Trapeze partners total in the U.S. and Canada.
Pataky said the interest from Juniper partners in wireless LAN has been high, and that a "high percentage" -- he declined to provide exact figures -- have established wireless LAN practices already. Juniper will insist partners achieve specialization -- currently being developed -- to sell the Trapeze wireless LAN solutions.
"We count more [partners] than Trapeze, but many, many less than Cisco or HP," said Pataky, when asked about whether having Trapeze's products available to thousands more channel partners would overexpose them. "We've been cautious over the years. Wireless LAN really lends itself to specialization, and partners can really add value in the design and implementation. We're going to be really crisp and really clear in our communications, and do the right thing by the partners here and in the rest of the Juniper channel."
Several Trapeze products, including controllers and some access points, will be selectively rebranded as Juniper by the middle of 2011, and Trapeze software will be integrated into Juniper's Junos platform, according to Juniper. Assuming the acquisition closes without delay, the next communications to partners, Pataky said, will be about mapping Trapeze partners into the J-Partner program.
Juniper partners told CRN in recent days that the Trapeze buy will be a positive for Juniper, although it will be some time before Juniper's strength as a wireless LAN vendor will be clear.
Terrapin Systems, a San Jose-based solution provider and Juniper partner, was already a partner of Trapeze before the acquisition. The Trapeze portfolio should round out the portfolio nicely, said Chris Becerra, Terrapin's vice president of sales.
"I can only speculate why they decided to do it, but one reason is to hedge against the thought that we run into a lot of customers looking to deploy a lot more wireless," Becerra said. "So they're hedging their bets against losing business to the specific wireless guys. Trapeze isn't one of the bigger players, and it's sort of minor for us right now, but it's a positive."
"We have a lot of close relationships with the executive suite at Juniper -- they're by far our second largest partner -- and they finally have all the products they can go to market with, so we're excited," said James Marsh, senior vice president, Carousel Industries, an Exeter, R.I.-based solution provider.
That said, Carousel's wireless business is up north of 300 percent year-over-year this year, Marsh said, and it maintains strong relationships with Aruba Networks and Meru Networks on the vendor side.
"I don't foresee that changing," Marsh said of Carousel's partnerships with Aruba and Meru. "So I'm sure the Trapeze story will become more prevalent for us, but right now, we have two very solid partners already."