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WATCH: Lenovo’s Intelligent Devices Channel Chief Talks Strategy And Challenges At Accelerate 2019

Lenovo’s Rob Cato discusses what’s new for the company’s channel strategy at the annual customer and partner conference, Accelerate 2019.

Lenovo was proud to show off its channel successes at its annual customer and partner conference, Accelerate 2019.

Lenovo’s Rob Cato, who works as channel chief of the company’s Intelligent Devices Group, told CRNtv that over 85 percent of Lenovo’s commercial business throughout North America flows through the channel. It follows a big push by the company to drive more engagement and investment with its partners, an initiative that the company has no plans to slow down.

Here’s a look at some of CRNtv’s interview with Cato at Accelerate 2019:

Tell us about Lenovo’s Channel First strategy.

The channel is at the epicenter of everything we do. We really want to go and lead with our channel partners throughout the North America market. Over 85 percent of our commercial business goes through our channel partners and they’re really at the forefront of everything we do to drive our business.

What would you say is the biggest challenge faced by partners today?

Obviously, the rate and pace by which technology is changing is a big challenge for them. I think they trust Lenovo because the innovation that’s now back as seen in the new devices we are creating. It’s really getting back to the engineer spirit Lenovo has been known for and I think that’s why they like doing business with us.

The Intelligent Devices Group and the Data Center Group share a common partner portal. How is Lenovo driving synergy between the two sides of the business?

It’s about offering an end-to-end solution for our partners and making sure we have everything from devices, end-point devices and all the way to the cloud and infrastructure products. Again, providing a portal where they can go in and see all of our marketing, all of our resources and all of the content they have available. One of the big initiatives we’ve started this year is to really digitize that portal and make it a little bit easier to really improve that partner experience going forward.

What are your most successful partners doing that others can learn from?

They understand our program, they understand how the maximize their earnigns potential and drive that into the market. They also really listen to what their customers are also saying to them. So, they are building solutions with Lenovo and developing around things their customers are asking for. So, one of the things I like is that they are coming to us with ideas and different things they can do to grow their business and we are listening to them. I think it’s been a while since we decided we would listen and act on that feedback and you can see the changes that are starting to take place.

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