D-Link Pumps Up Partner Profits With Program Revamp

The Fountain Valley, Calif.-based consumer and business networking vendor on Monday launched a new set of incentives as part of its Premier Partner Program. According to D-Link, it is now offering a 5 percent up-front discount for registered partners from their distributor of choice, along with a restructured back-end rebate system.

Keith Karlsen, D-Link's executive vice president of North American sales, said the goal is to build a simple program that attracts partners and spurs profits.

"We felt it was necessary to revamp our program and make it as simple and clean as possible," Karlsen said.

First, Karlsen said the new program will offer VARs a 5 percent up-front discount from distributors. On top of that, D-Link is offering partners back-end rebates, offering 1 percent on $10,000 and a half percent on every $10,000 after that, up to 15 percent, meaning solution providers can receive up to 15 percent back-end rebates per quarter.

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"It's a very aggressive program," said John Meaney, D-Link's associate vice president of field sales. "It can be significantly more profitable for VARs."

Along with the new rebates and discounts, D-Link said it also has bumped up its field staff by roughly 30 percent and now has more than 40 account managers and field-based sales and engineer resources for solution providers.

D-Link also is launching a 5 percent up-front discount for VARs that serve public sector, education and nonprofit organizations that is stackable on top of the 5 percent up-front discount from distribution. D-Link also has enhanced its quarterly spifs and margin programs, enhanced its proposal-based market development funds and slashed the cost of demo equipment to 50 percent of the distribution price.

According to Meaney, many of the rebates and incentives are stackable.

On the support side, D-Link is now offering a rapid response bid desk to partners for competitive situations and guaranteeing a response time of between four and 24 hours. Partners also will now receive VAR-only priority level 3 technical support.

Finally, D-Link has partnered with GE Capital's Commercial Distribution Finance to offer VARs a variety of special financing programs, which now include interest-free 60-day repayment plans. Karlsen said the financing programs will help VARs keep product stock and give them additional time to sell and build solutions around it.

Overall, Karlsen said, D-Link has revamped its program to give authorized VARs added revenue through increased sales of D-Link gear, which includes network switches, wireless gear, IP camera surveillance equipment and storage products.

"The ultimate goal is to gain partners through a simple program," he said, adding that the program was designed to make it easy for solution providers to understand and realize actual profits.