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Ingram Micro Acquires Harmony: Makes SMB Play For CloudBlue

‘We want to continue to give our partner customers a choice to integrate and operate on. As we have grown our ecosystem, we’ve seen that most of our partners around the globe are not using PSA tools. PSA tools are great. We are trying to reach SMB partner to give them CRM, invoice, billing, and other services. We’re reacting to those partners who tell us they need these kind of tools,’ says CloudBlue President Nimesh Dave.

Ingram Micro, which this week disclosed that it quietly acquired Harmony Business Systems a few months ago, said it is bringing that company’s professional services automation platform to the Ingram Micro CloudBlue cloud commerce platform, with an emphasis on making the technology available to the large SMB channel partner community.

Harmony is the developer of the HarmonyPSA platform that brings automation, management, billing, ticketing, customer relationship management, and related services to MSPs, said Nimesh Dave, president of CloudBlue and Ingram Micro Cloud.

“HarmonyPSA helps partners manage the different complexities of managing customers,” Dave told CRN. “It is an integrated platform, and works with any supplier.”

[Related: Ingram Micro’s Kirk Robinson To Synnex-Tech Data: ‘Game On’]

Ingram Micro acquired U.K.-based Harmony a couple months ago in recognition that the kinds of tools partners need and use are getting increasingly complex, and has since been working to integration HarmonyPSA into CloudBlue, Dave said.

“Buying and selling products and services is easy,” he said. “Managing the flows is harder. Our customers tell us they need a platform to manage the entire lifecycle of a service, and it has to be for every service.”

HarmonyPSA already has a market in the U.K. where it is used by over 1,500 seats, including seats with two clients in the U.S., Dave said. It already offers services in multiple languages and multiple currencies.

HarmonyPSA will be part of Ingram Micro’s CloudBlue family of services for SaaS applications, but not exclusively, Dave said. MSPs still have a choice of PSA platforms.

“However, our PSA has great integrations with the technologies we provide, as well as with AWS and Azure, with more to come,” he said. “We see this as an ecosystem, and want to provide it for what we call the ‘more-as-a-service’ economy.”

Dave said HarmonyPSA will not compete with any other PSA platform except in limited cases, as it is targeted at some midrange and nearly all SMB-focused MSPs for whom other PSA platforms are too expensive.

“We want to continue to give our partner customers a choice to integrate and operate on,” he said. “As we have grown our ecosystem, we’ve seen that most of our partners around the globe are not using PSA tools. PSA tools are great. We are trying to reach SMB partners to give them CRM, invoice, billing, and other services. We’re reacting to those partners who tell us they need these kind of tools.”

While HarmonyPSA will also scale to larger deployments, Dave said Ingram Micro CloudBlue’s focus will be on smaller MSPs, and so does not expect to be competing against other PSA tool providers.

“Also, moving from one PSA to another is not easy,” he said. “It’s a relatively detailed process. We are just providing choice. And, like I said, many partners, especially the smaller ones, do not use a PSA platform. And the market is big enough so everyone can move to a digital economy.”

The acquisition of Harmony is the latest in a series of investments Ingram Micro has made in the cloud totaling about $460 million over the last eight years, including the development of its CloudBlue cloud commerce platform in 2018, Dave said.

Ingram Micro in 2013 acquired hosting company SoftCom, and in 2014 followed that with the acquisition of Spanish cloud API developer SofCloudIT. The following year it acquired service automation platform developer Odin.

In 2016, Ingram Micro acquired cloud application provider Ensim, application user interface developer Mamasu, and multi-cloud management platform developer Concerto.

Dave said the timing of Ingram Micro’s unveiling of its Harmony acquisition only a week after Synnex and Tech Data unveiled a plan to merge was pure coincidence.

“I have a lot of respect for Tech Data and Synnex,” he said. “But in the middle of this they will be integrating two separate platform. Partners will be looking for a way to do more with automation. We didn’t time our news. Customers are making a choice every day. Customers continue to choose Ingram Micro as their provider. And as providers get more inward-looking going forward, partners will focus on who focuses on them.”

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