EMC ISVs To Be Added To Channel Program

Following in the footsteps of IBM, Hewlett-Packard, Cisco Systems and others, EMC this week will announce plans to unify its worldwide ISV partner programs. The new plan calls for creating a single, unified program, known as the Velocity ISV program, with common terms and conditions that will leverage the best from all the distinct programs while creating a common, more simple way for ISVs to engage EMC.

EMC has inherited several hundred software partners worldwide in the past five years through the acquisitions of Documentum, Legato, VMWare and others. As many as 600 partners will be directly impacted by this latest move, according to Pete Koliopoulos, senior director of offer and channel marketing at EMC.

"There are five separate areas today [impacted by the change]," he says. That includes ISVs who work with the following software platforms: Centera, Documentum, NAS, SAN and Smarts.

The underlying need for doing this was simple, Koliopoulos says. EMC says it wants to make it easier, more consistent and more predictable for partners to engage EMC, and to increase the number of partners who work with multiple parts of the company's software portfolio.

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Some of the development partners belong to as many as four different programs, each with its own terms and conditions, he explains. Not surprisingly, many were grumbling about complexity, duplication and redundancy.

"Now you come in under one contract under Velocity, and you can extend that under multiple disciplines," he said.

In addition to the ISV news, EMC this week is making additional changes as well. That includes several modest ones for U.S.-based partners--they can now qualify for program membership "points" for smaller sales volumes, except for Premier partners, who will now require greater "points" than before--as well as greater changes for overseas allies, says John Koury, vice president of channels marketing at the company.

Today, EMC boasts as many as 1,500 active and engaged solution providers who belong to its core Velocity program. Roughly 300 to 400 are here in North America, not including its software partners.

The channel-program announcements are being made this week in Las Vegas, where EMC is hosting its second annual partner conference for software partners, and following last week's disclosure by the world leader in information management and storage that it will "rebalance" and trim its workforce. As many as 1,000 positions worldwide will be impacted, the company said.