Storage vendor EMC is offering its channel partners increased margin opportunities by combining some deal registration rebates and tying other benefits to targeted promotions.
EMC is making the changes to its Velocity Partner Program in order to make it easier for partners to do business with the company and to help it drive partner profitability, said Gregg Ambulos, vice president of Americas channel sales for the Hopkinton, Mass.-based vendor.
The enhancements, which were unveiled Tuesday, include the ability for EMC's solution providers to stack different deal registration benefits together for increased margins, Ambulos said.
Currently, EMC has two types of deal registration programs. The first, incremental deal registration, has been around for nearly six years and offers partners an additional 5 percent margin if they register an EMC deal which they opened themselves with the vendor.
The second, prime deal registration, comes from when EMC's sales reps find a potential deal and assign it to a partner who can then register it. In this case, there is no incremental margin, as EMC and not the partner found the deal. However, Ambulos said, for the partner it represents business it might not otherwise have seen.
To get incremental deal registration margins above these, solution providers must have one or more of their personnel EMCTA (EMC Technical Architect) certified, Ambulos said. EMCTA certification, introduced a year ago, makes it easier for partners to drive customer solutions and for EMC's sales reps to feel comfortable passing business to a partner, he said.
Starting this month, a partner with locally-certified EMCTA personnel who register deals with EMC gains an additional 10 percent margin, Ambulos said. This is offered to the partner whether it registers its own deal or registers a deal that was given to it by EMC, he said.
By specifying a local EMCTA resource, EMC is showing the importance it places on partners' investment in certification, Ambulos said.
"We want to make sure the partners are making the investments in the [geographic] areas they are servicing," he said.
It is a great deal for solution providers who invest in the EMCTA program, said Keith Norbie, vice president of sales at Nexus Information Systems, a Minnetonka, Minn.-based solution provider and EMC partner.
"I have two EMCTAs, so I love the deal," Norbie said.
The enhancement to the deal registration program shows that EMC is acknowledging that there are various ways partners can register a deal, Norbie said.
However, it is important that solution providers work hard to make sure they are in line for such opportunities, Norbie said.
"EMC sales reps are very active, always canvassing opportunities and funneling them to the channel," he said. "I tell my guys, you have to have a solid relationship with EMC reps to get the deals. If not, you end up not working with the Velocity program, but instead go chasing price deals."
The second enhancement is a new Velocity Incentive Program (VIP), which replaces EMC's Journey to the Top program, Ambulos said.
The new VIP offers EMC's solution providers opportunities to stack incremental rewards for tying sales of multiple EMC products together in conjunction with specific promotions the vendor is offering.
Under the new VIP, solution providers get rewards for new account acquisitions, platform hardware, and software, and can increase the rewards by tying them with incremental sales of other EMC products such as SourceOne solutions for archiving and compliance, RSA security products, RSA Data Loss Prevention Suite and RSA SecurID.
The incentives include rebates to customers and to partners, and are offered in conjunction with six-month sales promotions, Ambulos said. "It's all tied to solutions we are driving in the industry to solve customer problems," he said.
Norbie said the changes are important as they show EMC is moving from offering generic incentives to tying those incentives to solutions.
"While EMC had incentives before, they weren't as focused on attach rates, but were more generic," he said. "The new incentives accelerate revenue recognition based on increasing sales. It's the same concept of selling as McDonalds: Do you want fries with that?"