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5 Companies That Came To Win This Week

For the week ending Feb. 7, CRN takes a look at the companies that brought their 'A' game to the channel.

The Week Ending Feb. 7

Topping this week’s list of companies that came to win is Intel, which is preparing to launch a significant upgrade of its Cascade Lake Xeon Scalable server processors.

Also making the "Came to Win" list are AMD, whose laptop CPU sales got a boost in late 2019 from Intel’s CPU shortage; Dell Technologies for debuting significant enhancements and additions to its partner program; Oracle for firing up five new data centers as part of its effort to be a major IaaS provider; and cloud cybersecurity provider Netskope for raising an impressive $340 million in new financing.

Not everyone in the IT industry was making smart moves this week, of course. For a rundown of companies that were unfortunate, unsuccessful or just didn't make good decisions, check out this week's Five Companies That Had A Rough Week roundup.


Intel Set To Unleash ‘Cascade Lake Refresh” To Counter AMD EPYC

Intel is set to refresh its second-generation Xeon Scalable server processors in a bid to put pressure on rival AMD’s EPYC multicore processor blitz – a move that could alleviate the ongoing Xeon processor shortage.

The 18 new processors, code-named “Cascade Lake Refresh,” will provide partners with additional cores, higher clock frequencies and higher cache within the mainstream and value segments of the Xeon Scalable lineup,” according to a CRN story that cited information from three industry sources with knowledge of Intel’s plans.

The Cascade Lake Refresh processors are seen as Intel’s bid to fight back with higher core counts against the AMD EPYC Rome processors that debuted last year.

The new processors could also help improve Xeon supply constraints that have been felt around the channel.

Intel is expected to announce the new processors on Feb. 23.


AMD Laptop CPUs Get Q4 Sales Boost Due To Intel Shortage: Researcher

While the ongoing shortage of Intel CPUs were a problem for many, it was a gain for AMD in that it boosted sales of the company’s laptop processors during the 2019 holiday season, especially in the low end of the market.

That was the conclusion of Mercury Research, an Arizona-based firm that tracks processor shipments. The company reported that AMD’s laptop processor unit market share grew four points to 16.2 percent in the fourth quarter compared to one year earlier.

The researcher concluded that Intel’s shortage of low-end processors was one of the main reasons for AMD’s gain.

The researcher also said that AMD gained market share in desktop and server processors in the quarter. But it was in the laptop market where AMD made its biggest gain.


Dell Technologies Offers New Incentives, Tools And Rebates In Partner Program Upgrade

Dell Technologies is looking for growth from its channel partners in its just-begun fiscal 2021 and this week the company rolled out a number of partner program enhancements – all in keeping with the vendor’s channel goals of “simple, predictable and profitable” – to help make that happen.

Topping the list of offerings is the new Integrated Quoting Platform that the company said will drive much more predictability in pricing for partners with deal registration, providing the best online price for servers, storage and networking products.

Dell also offered new target customers for server sales through its Partner Preferred Program, improvements to the Cloud Service Provider Program, a consolidated product rebate structure, elimination of the quarterly target process and point-of-sales reporting requirements, simplified training requirements, and reduced tier revenue requirements for partners that operate in smaller markets.

Dell is also expanding program benefits for sell-out compensation to include deals with authorized cloud services partners, a move that should increase sales-channel cooperation by compensating core sales reps on deals involving authorized partners. And the company is streamlining its sales operations by combining its enterprise and commercial sales organizations into one entity.


Oracle Brings Five Data Centers Online As Part Of Ambitious Global Cloud Expansion

Oracle’s efforts to be a major player in the Infrastructure-as-a-Service arena took a significant leap forward this week when it went live with five new data centers around the world. The facilities are aimed at delivering redundancy within countries to satisfy the disaster recovery demands of enterprises hosting mission-critical workloads.

The new data centers are located in Jeddah, Saudi Arabia; Osaka, Japan; Melbourne, Australia; Montreal, Canada; and Amsterdam in the Netherlands. The data centers represent Oracle’s latest step in building out what it calls its Gen 2 infrastructure with geographic redundancy a differentiating strategy.

Oracle is looking to break into the leader board of IaaS providers, competing against the likes of Amazon Web Services, Google, Microsoft and Facebook.


Cloud Security Firm Netskope Raises $340 Million

The IT security industry took notice this week when Netskope, a provider of cloud-delivered cybersecurity and cloud access security broker services, raised a stunning $340 million in new financing.

The Series G round of funding, led by Sequoia Capital Global Equities, puts the company’s valuation at nearly $3 billion. The funding makes Netskope one of the most valuable venture-funded, pure-play cybersecurity vendors in the industry.

Netskope will use the new financing to maintain its growth trajectory. The Santa Clara, Calif.-based company said it grew its customer base by 80 percent in the last year and now serves 25 percent of the Fortune 100.


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