Dell Channel Chief: Everdream Deal Boosts Indirect Strategy

Greg Davis, vice president of commercial channels for Dell, said the company was committed to keeping the company's channel program off-limits to the direct side of Dell, and that Everdream's integration into Dell would fall into that strategy. Dell said Thursday it would buy Everdream -- which makes remote management tools for desktops -- for an undisclosed sum and that the deal would likely close by the end of January.

"There are multiple elements that we have to be able to deliver," Davis said. "We have a dedicated organization for our channel programs and our channel partners. The second piece is, we are testing the deal registration process right now. Several customers are testing the tool. Everdream has a deal registration process as well. It's not accessible to any of our direct selling teams, and when we grant (solution providers) deal registration we won't compete with them."

Dell's pickup of Everdream comes on the heels of its buyout of managed service provider tools company Silverback, in addition to its pending acquisition of storage technology company EqualLogic and its now-closed deal to take over ASAP Software. The deals all center around Dell's expanding strategy to provide a services and IT simplification layer to its hardware product lineup.

Mike Menegay, vice president of sales at Everdream, Fremont, Calif., said he has been working at the company since April to build a channel-focused strategy, after Everdream worked for several years selling direct.

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That new channel strategy at Everdream has included deal registration, Menegay said. "The channel partners we deal with today, we'll continue to deal with, and continue to have deal registration," Menegay said. "During our (internal) discussions on our channel strategy, we have focused on major areas in the channel and not on recruiting thousands of channel partners we couldn't properly support." He said Everdream has initiated its channel strategy with managed services providers, and partners of MSPs that could resell tools to clients.

Everdream prices its tools and sells them and bills solution provides, Emenegay said. In turn, channel partners invoice their clients. Everdream's tools are largely branded by its channel partners and sold as their services or, in some cases, integrated with an end-user's own brand at a client site.

Menegay, prior to joining Everdream, held executive and channel-focused positions at both En Pointe Technologies and Network Solutions.