Zlago Inks Synnex Deal For SMB Cloud Services, Hosted Desktop

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"It's something we've been eyeing for a while," said Zlago CEO Michael Gold of the Synnex pairing.

Zlago hopes to augment its stable of roughly 50 channel partners by tapping into the vast resources available through Synnex, which currently boasts around 18,000 VARs and solution providers.

"Our expectation is to get many, many hundreds of partners with this relationship," Gold said, adding that as Synnex expands its hosted services offerings the partnership will boost Zlago's ability to get to market.

Synnex will now market and sell Zlago's hosted desktop and virtual server solutions to its resellers. Synnex has also developed a SaaS portal to promote and make it easier for VARs to buy and manage their hosted services, which is one of the areas where Zlago will be featured as the hosted desktop and virtual server provider.

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Gold said Zlago sided with Synnex over other distributors Tech Data, D&H and Ingram Micro because of a shared vision for the future of managed services.

"We like Synnex's vision for managed services, focusing on building it in a way that lets VARs do business with them," he said. "The stars aligned on it. There are so many elements that lined up that we feel good about.

Gold said Synnex and Zlago share similar visions pertaining to strength, reach and finance; the types of VARs, partners and solution providers they target; and the marketing and support required.

"Zlago's hosted virtual desktop and virtual server offerings extend our SaaS focus and are complementary to our suite of solutions," Synnex VP of ISVs and Alliances Denna Mensch said in a statement.

Established in 2008, Washington D.C.-based Zlago sells a host of SaaS and cloud services such as hosted desktops, SaaS business applications, security, disaster recovery, back-up, Exchange, BlackBerry, SharePoint, PBX/VoIP and others to take away the management and cost burden SMBs face with owning their own IT infrastructure. "Zlago has four data centers; two in the U.S. and two in the U.K."

"We're literally giving customers their own desktop environment, not a terminal service or hosted applications," he said. "We're actually providing the desktop hosted in the cloud."

End customers no longer have to plunk down the capital on PCs, servers, software and other systems. Zlago VARs can give each employee a personalized virtual desktop that can be accessed from anywhere through a Web connection. Additionally, applications can be easily added and removed and customers only pay for what they use, making it easy to scale up and down.

Zlago's Synnex deal comes as the virtual hosted desktop market is poised for growth. Gartner forecasted that there will be 100 million virtual hosted desktops by 2013, representing a $65 billion market opportunity for VARs to attack. And the opportunity is shifting from the enterprise to the SMB.

Gold said Zlago resellers can private label or co-brand Zlago services while managing the migration to hosted environments -- either full or hybrid -- and serve as the operator and manager of those virtual and cloud IT services.

"As small businesses look to move IT off-site ... VARs are in a good position to deliver these services," Gold said. "We provide a means to manage that for the small business."

Clay Harris, vice president and COO of WorkSmart, a Durham, N.C.-based solution provider, said Zlago's deal with Synnex will ease his sales process and enable Zlago to focus on its technology as opposed to billing partners and other administrative tasks.

Along with working with Zlago for the last six months, WorkSmart is also a Synnex partner.

"In terms of deployment and billing it will make it easier," Harris said. "It makes sense for us."

Additionally, the Synnex pairing will give Zlago more credibility in the marketplace while also helping it reach more partners and customers, Harris said.

"It expands the impact of virtual desktop to small business clients," he said. "And virtual desktop is where our clients are going to move over the next few years."