Net@Work Steps Up Partner Alliance Initiative

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Solution provider Net@Work has expanded its Partner Alliance Program, offering IT services, market intelligence and expertise that other VARs can use to augment their own offerings.

The initiative is particularly targeted at solution providers in the Sage Software market, said Tom Miller, the former Sage Software channel chief who joined Net@Work in July to run the Partner Alliance Program.

New York-based Net@Work (No. 436 on the CRN Solution Provider 500) is a leading solution provider that partners with Sage Software, Microsoft and other IT vendors. In addition to working with its own customers, the company, in a unique growth strategy, is offering its services and technologies to other solution providers to augment their businesses.

[Related: Solution Provider Net@Work Expands Nonprofit Practice With Acquisition]

"This gives us the chance to provide partners with something that they can't get anywhere else," said Miller, who joined Net@Work after retiring from Sage earlier this year. "The Alliance provides long-term value in giving partners multiple and flexible options based on where they are in their business lifecycle."

The new program has four categories: Affiliate, Augmentation, Reseller and Referral. Net@Work and solution providers have revenue sharing agreements under all four categories, with each category structured a little differently. Net@Work said it would pay 50 percent of gross software margins for existing client recommendations, for example, and up to 20 percent for new prospect lead referrals.

Most of the 22 partners now working with Net@Work are in the Affiliate tier, under which a solution provider relies on Net@Work to provide additional services. An example might be a Sage partner that's authorized to resell the vendor's Sage 100 ERP package, but not the vendor's human resource management applications. The partner can bring Net@Work into a project that involves both products.

Another potential partner would be a Microsoft reseller who has a project that combines Microsoft's SharePoint collaboration software with Sage Software applications, but the solution provider doesn't have a Sage practice.

Under the Augmentation category, solution partners manage an entire software transaction themselves but rely on Net@Work to help with implementation and other tasks. Partners also can simply refer to Net@Work deals they aren't eligible for and get a commission. And under the Reseller category, solution providers agree to an exclusive arrangement with Net@Work, a relationship that could ultimately lead to an acquisition, Miller said.

Net@Work also develops its own market data, and Miller said the company would work with partners to develop a market plan around that data.

Miller described the program's goals as building sustainable relationships between Net@Work and other solution providers, rather than being a "transactional" master VAR program.

The program covers Sage Software's entire product portfolio of ERP, CRM and human resource management applications, as well as products the vendor has recently spun off, such as the Abila Nonprofit application suite and SalesLogix sales-force automation applications, he said.


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