Big Data Startup Confluent Ratchets Up Channel Efforts With New Program, Executive Hires

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Kogentix provides the Confluent platform on a reference-sell basis with the company bringing Confluent into some sales situations and vice versa. That will accelerate as Kogentix expands beyond building custom systems to developing packaged solutions that incorporate the Confluent technology. "We're already working with some of their account teams," Eckard said. "It made a lot of sense for us to become a Confluent partner."

Lightbend, a Confluent technology partner, markets an application development platform that businesses use to build new applications and modernize their legacy applications for distributed computing workloads. Lightbend has a go-to-market relationship with Confluent and provides interoperability between the two vendors' systems, said Brad Murdoch, Lightbend's corporate and business development vice president.

Murdoch said the two companies are exploring possible joint-development opportunities and a sales referral relationship is also a possibility. "They are really easy to work with as a partner," Murdoch said. "The Confluent program is really simple to get engaged with."

Through the new two-tier program partners gain access to best-practice information around the Kafka Connect framework, developer tools and other technology resources; marketing programs, content, sponsorships and other go-to-market resources; and participation in Confluent's beta programs. Consulting and systems integrator partners earn referral fees for deals they bring to Confluent.

The company also recruits authorized training partners.

Norton, the business development vice president, is a sales and business development veteran of such startups as Postini, MessageOne, Qualys and Scansafe. He recently joined Confluent from Hadoop software vendor MapR Technologies where he was senior director of partner sales and business development.

Norton said that two recently hired executives, Chief Marketing Officer Luanne Dauber and Worldwide Sales Vice President Todd Barnett, both recognize the value of the channel. Dauber joined the startup from Pure Storage where she was marketing vice president and was responsible for field and channel marketing. Barnett came from open-source software company Acquia where he was vice president of Americas sales.

Confluent also recently hired Cheryl Dalrymple as its chief financial officer. Dalrymple previously served as CFO for a number of venture-backed companies, including Polyvore and AdMob, as well as CFO at online information giant LexisNexis.

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