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CRN Celebrates 40 Years Of Being The Voice Of The Channel

The voice of the channel still rings loud and clear as CRN celebrates its 40th anniversary.

Happy 40th anniversary, CRN! That’s right, all of us here at CRN and The Channel Company are celebrating the 40th anniversary of CRN as the voice of the channel.

When CRN began chronicling the early days of the PC reseller boom in 1982, the goal was the same as it is today: provide all the news, information, analysis and insight that solution providers need to be successful. The mission has always been to act as their advocate, digging into the good, the bad and the ugly in the business and providing the thought leadership necessary to move the channel business model forward.

Former CRN Editor in Chief and The Channel Company Founding Partner Robert Faletra has called it putting the solution provider first in everything we do. The same fire and passion for the channel that led to the creation of CRN is part and parcel of what we do today and is behind The Channel Company’s ethos: The IT channel is our sole focus and passion.

That means providing content in all forms that allows solution providers to make money and to evolve and thrive. We have taken solution providers from the franchise-dominated PC reseller model to the value-added reseller model to the systems integrator model. Then there was the MSP explosion powering SMB technology adoption that came with the internet; the cloud solution provider model, which led to a new wave of born-in-the-cloud and Software-as-a-Service providers; and finally to the current strategic service provider model with Everything as a Service reshaping the channel landscape.

By the way, today’s strategic service provider opportunity—which The Channel Company first detailed seven years ago—represents the biggest ever in our 40-year history. The model is cresting into a tidal wave of opportunity for partners in the wake of the rush to cloud solutions in the midst of the pandemic.

CRN would not exist without the leadership of technology entrepreneurs and titans who are driving the strategic service provider and Everything-as-a-Service shift. That doesn’t happen without a vibrant channel ecosystem, including distributors that provide the much-needed financing, logistics and technology education and assistance and finally the end-user customers footing the bill. Without the whole ecosystem working together, there is no channel. The ability to address partner issues across the ecosystem has been critical to CRN’s success.

In those early years, CRN was one of 11 weekly publications that would attempt to make sense of the channel. But they all fell by the wayside because they did not understand the complexity of the channel and solution provider model. The knowledge of the channel that our team brings to the business is our intellectual property. That is why we invest so much in fielding the best reporters in the channel and holding them to the highest journalistic standards.

We are proud of our legacy, but as we celebrate our 40th anniversary we are even more excited about setting the pace for the channel for the next 40 years. In fact, we are adding more resources and talent to help power the channel forward with expanded security and managed services coverage and additional CRNtv coverage.

Look for special features on CRN.com throughout the year that will celebrate our 40-year anniversary and a special CRN 40th anniversary package in our June issue. But most importantly, look for CRN to continue to be the voice of the channel.

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