VMware Launches Partner Program For Public Cloud Newbies, With Focus On Disaster Recovery

VMware, which unveiled its vCloud Hybrid Service public cloud infrastructure-as-a-service last May, is now officially bringing it to the channel.

Launched earlier this week, VMware's vCloud Hybrid Service program is now available to partners in the U.S. and U.K., who can now take advantage of training, incentives, promotions and support for selling public cloud services.

As part of this effort, VMware wants partners to sell its cloud disaster recovery-as-a-service (DRaaS), which debuted in April as one of two marquee offerings running on its public cloud. The other is desktop-as-a-service, which VMware gained from its Desktone acquisition last October.

[Related: VMware Spices Up Its Public Cloud With New Disaster-Recovery-As-A-Service ]

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VMware is pushing disaster recover-as-a-service because there's "a ton of customer demand" for it right now, Brandon Sweeney, vice president of VMware's U.S. mid-market business, said in an interview.

Partners with midmarket customers are well-positioned to sell DRaaS because these organizations typically store their data at a single site, and need a more well-developed backup plan, Sweeney said.

VMware's cloud DRaaS starts at $835 monthly for one TB of storage and 20 GB of RAM.

VMware has also launched a vCloud Hybrid Cloud Solution Competency, with training and enablement delivered by Tech Data, Ingram Micro, Avnet and Arrow. The idea is to teach partners how to identify the sort of on-premise workloads that can be moved public cloud infrastructure to save money for customers, said Sweeney.

To get the ball rolling, VMware is offering incentives to partners that sell DRaaS and other IaaS services on its public cloud. In addition to financial rewards for signing up new customers, partners will get standard front- and back-end rebates, according to Sweeney.

There are also end-user incentives. New customers that sign up for a vCloud Hybrid Service subscription of longer than one month will get the first month free. If they don't like it, they can cancel within the first 30 days with no penalty, Sweeney said.

VMware has been pitching vCHS as a "safe landing place" for customers that run VMware private clouds. But while VMware partners are familiar with selling and deploying private clouds, most are relatively new to the public cloud.

Several partners contacted by CRN declined to comment the new VCHS program because they aren't currently selling public cloud and don’t have immediate plans to do so.

One VMware partner that does have big plans for vCHS is AdvizeX, a national solution provider headquartered in Independence, Ohio.

AdvizeX has been working with vCHS for the past six months and has lots of in-house public cloud expertise. Paul Timmerman, vice president of technology at AdvizeX, believes VMware's new program will help get more partners selling public cloud services.

DRaaS is a good service for VMware to highlight because it solves a key pain point for enterprises, Timmerman told CRN.

"This is, by far, the most requested service for commercial and midmarket customers," he said of DRaaS.