Synnex's Varnex Community Evolving To Meet New Digital Economy, Other Customer Initiatives

Varnex and its community of solution providers are facing ever-more complex challenges as the IT industry continues to migrate from traditional IT technologies to meet new customer requirements, and solution providers will have to accelerate the pace of their own transformation to keep up.

That's the message from a top Varnex executive speaking before an audience of over 700 attendees at the 10th anniversary Varnex Fall conference, being held this week in San Diego.

Varnex is a peer-to-peer community of solution providers that work with Fremont, Calif.-based Synnex. Partners that join Varnex receive training and services opportunities not available to other Synnex partners, and are provided a forum for partnering with each other.

[Related: Synnex Completes Westcon Americas Purchase; Partners Look For Consistent Staffing, Service Levels]

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Steve Jow, senior vice president of sales for Synnex, told partners that they have to be prepared for what he called the "DX Economy," or the digitization of the economy.

Without citing specific sources of information, Jow said that by 2020 Synnex expects about two-thirds of all IT software and infrastructure investment will be spent on the cloud, software-defined data center infrastructure will be standard in about 75 percent of global data centers, and IT security will become a $45.8 billion market. There also will be 82.9 billion Internet of Things-connected endpoints by 2025, of which nearly one-quarter will be using 5G for connectivity.

"These are all opportunities for us to address," he said.

Varnex, and through it Synnex, are responding with several priorities for 2018, Jow said. These include bringing a new range of technologies to partners via Synnex's September acquisition of Westcon-Comstor Americas. That acquisition brought Synnex new services and expertise in security, unified communications and networking, including a new strategic relationship with Cisco Systems.

Other Synnex priorities for 2018 including evolving its CloudSolv business, which provides partners with cloud-based offerings and support, into an everything-as-a-service platform; develop new IoT and other verticalization expertise; and provide more capabilities to its SMB-focused partners, Jow said.

"The way we all go to market is solutions versus products," he said. "We've evolved to more solutions. … I told my team, 'Resellers are now changing how they talk to customers about solutions. You need to change how you talk to our resellers.'"

The information provided to channel partner attendees is useful, but the real benefit of attending Varnex is the interaction between partners, said Yawai Ng, president of Phaselock Systems International, an Ottawa, Ontario-based solution provider and Varnex member.

"This event has grown from a small group of attendees to well over 500 people," Ng told CRN. "As Steve Jow said, it's important for us to grow individually and as a community. It's good to see how we've all grown by partnering together."

Steve Barnett, owner and CEO of Streamline Networks, a small West Los Angeles, Calif.-based MSP who is attending the Varnex conference as a prospective member, said the fact that the organization has so many members and has been around for 10 years are points in its favor.

Barnett told CRN he sees the value of the networking with other partners that is available with Varnex.

"I'm seeing a lot of collaborations and new ideas," he said. "I also hope to get a shot in the arm. When talking with other owners, we're exchanging success stories, seeing how they are doing with new products, and getting introductions to new people to talk to."