Bloom: No Change In Channel Vs. Direct Mix For Veritas


Veritas CEO Gary Bloom said Monday he sees no significant shift in the percentage of sales going through the channel vs. the company's direct-sales force.

About 55 percent of the company's sales now go through the channel, with the remaining 45 percent moving through OEMs and Veritas' direct-sales force, Bloom said.

"We don't see any kind of massive or immediate shift in the mix that exists today," said Bloom at a press event here. "What we do see is, when we talk about the high end of the enterprise, whether that be the top 100 or 500 customers we have, those customers do tend to look for more direct relationships."

Bloom said it is not uncommon for a CIO to want a direct relationship with Veritas. "So we are responding with our professional service organization, we are responding with premium support services," he said.

The company is not engaging in "artificial shifts of the channel mix," he said.

"I don't think you'll see even with the Linux announcement any kind of shift ... in our channel strategy," he said. Nevertheless, he added, Veritas is lining up distribution agreements and is courting solution providers to offer Linux solutions.

As to what impact Veritas has seen from the aggressive pro-channel compensation policy that rival Computer Associates International launched earlier this year, Bloom pointed to Veritas' market share. "CA has been talking about this dramatic shift towards their channel partners, comping them differently, being their best friend, loving them ... if you look at the share in 2000, we gained 13 points in the Unix and Windows market. In 2001, we gained 11 points of market share. In the Windows and Unix market we are now 48.8 percent."

Donald Foster, vice president of partner sales for Veritas, Mountain View, Calif., said the company is continuing to invest in a robust channel. He said Veritas' direct-sales and services initiatives do not mean the company is diluting its channel investment. "We will continue to make investments across the board," he said. "We want to go deeper and wider."

"No one can survive without a truly effective blended sales model," he said.

Foster said the Veritas channel program is getting stronger and that new components, including a deal registration plan, is slated for the future.

Foster would not discuss the level of staffing in Veritas' professional services group and direct-sales force, or if that staffing has changed over the past year.