Channel News

Ingram Micro CEO: Bigger Focus On Cloud, Partner Skills In 2023

Joseph F. Kovar

‘We’re still running our playbook and we’re still focused on [partners] and what we can do to help them take out complexity and continue to add skillsets. We’re making sure we’re building out skills to allow our solution providers to be more successful and integrated with their end-customers,’ says Ingram Micro CEO Paul Bay.

Building On Success

IT distribution continues to do well regardless of the ups and downs in the economy or the fortunes of individual products or services. That is no accident, said Paul Bay, CEO of Irvine, Calif.-based Ingram Micro, the IT world’s second largest distributor.

During a break between meetings with peers and vendors at last week’s Global Technology Distribution Council, or GTDC, summit in San Diego, Bay told CRN that the distribution model, and Ingram Micro’s business model, tended to smooth out any rough patches caused by such factors as changes in customer requirements, supply chain issues, or even the COVID-19 pandemic.

As a result, IT distribution helped the IT industry as a whole thrive in the face of the pandemic and potential issues as the economy faces inflation or a potential recession, Bay said.

[Related: Ingram Micro, TD Synnex, D&H CEOs On The 2023 Economic Outlook]

“In distribution, because of our size, we have a lot of variability,” he said. “So we can turn the dials up and down based on supply and demand, inflationary challenges whether it’s freight that everybody’s had to deal with or general inflation and labor rates, and whatnot. So we’re able to figure out how we automate and make sure that we’re driving efficiencies and are able to offset as best as possible any of the things we can’t control from an inflationary perspective.”

Bay also discussed some of the changes Ingram Micro itself is going through, including moves to help its channel partners build digital platforms for customers, the company’s increasing ties between its own cloud marketplace and public cloud hyperscalers, and the expansion of its support for MSPs.

There’s a lot going on at Ingram Micro and in IT distribution in general. Click through the slideshow to get more of Bay’s take on what’s happening.

One quick note: When Bay uses the term “customers,” he is referring to channel partners, which are Ingram Micro’s customers. That use of the word “customer” is pretty consistent through the IT distribution business.

Joseph F. Kovar

Joseph F. Kovar is a senior editor and reporter for the storage and the non-tech-focused channel beats for CRN. He keeps readers abreast of the latest issues related to such areas as data life-cycle, business continuity and disaster recovery, and data centers, along with related services and software, while highlighting some of the key trends that impact the IT channel overall. He can be reached at

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