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CRN: How big a competitive advantage do you think the new rules of engagement will be against the HPs and IBMs of the world?
Scannell: We don’t take any of the competitors lightly. So we are focused on all of them. We have got a special attention on anybody who is growing. Look, IBM’s results came out yesterday, their storage business was down. We have slowed NetApp’s growth down significantly by focusing on them. We’ve got a better product and we have just got to educate our customers on the [EMC] value proposition and when we do that we win a lot more than we lose.
So we’re going to focus on HP. We are going to continue to focus on Hitachi. We think we are well positioned against the [entire] field [of competitors].
CRN: EMC seems to be putting a much bigger investment into the channel. Is there any way to quantify that? How much more are you investing in sales through the channel?
Scannell: It is significant. We said we want our partners to be successful. We want our customers to be delighted with the portfolio of solutions that we have and the way to do that is to invest heavily in products and go to market. Our go to market is both direct and indirect. And we are investing more heavily now in indirect than direct so we can get much better reach into the market.
CRN: How do you feel about your channel opportunity this year?
Scannell: We gave very high growth rates for the global channel organization. And I think we will raise those numbers because the investments are paying off. We are going to continue to invest where it makes sense. And this is an area that makes a lot of sense for us.
CRN: How big a stick is there behind the partner rules of engagement?