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5 Companies That Came To Win This Week

For the week ending March 26, CRN takes a look at the companies that brought their ‘A’ game to the channel.

The Week Ending March 26

Topping this week’s Came to Win list are Tech Data and Synnex for their plan to merge and create the IT industry’s biggest distributor.

Also making the list are AWS for a savvy hire to replace CEO Andy Jassy, Intel for a plan to rejuvenate and expand its manufacturing operations, VMware for its new customer lifecycle program for partners, and cybersecurity startup Orca Security for a blockbuster funding round.

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Synnex, Tech Data To Merge To Create $57B Distribution Titan

Distributors Tech Data and Synnex made a bold move this week when they announced a $7.2 billion plan to merge and change the IT distribution competitive landscape.

Once the merger is complete later this year the combined companies will be led by Tech Data CEO Rich Hume with Synnex President and CEO Dennis Polk serving as executive chairman. The entity will have annual sales of $57 billion, more than 150,000 customers and 22,000 employees.

The merger will create the largest distributor in the IT industry and be well-situated to serve SMB, corporate, consumer, government and industrial markets with advanced and endpoint products and specialized services.

Combining the two companies is expected to generate $100 million of optimization and synergy benefits in the first year after closing and $200 million by the end of the second year.

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Intel Launches IDM 2.0 Manufacturing Strategy

Intel this week unveiled its plan to significantly expand its manufacturing operations and even create chips for other companies, while at the same time increasing its use of external chip foundries.

CEO Pat Gelsinger said the “IDM 2.0” strategy will create “a new era of innovation and product leadership” at Intel, which in recent years has struggled with manufacturing issues.

The core of the new integrated device manufacturing strategy is a roughly $20 billion investment to construct two chip fabrication facilities in Arizona. Those plants will not only manufacture Intel products but will provide chip manufacturing for other companies as part of a new standalone Intel Foundry Services business.

Intel also plans to make use of chip manufacturing plants run by TSMC, Samsung, GlobalFoundries and UMC for a range of Intel products.

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AWS Hires Tableau’s Adam Selipsky As Its New CEO

Amazon Web Services made a big move in the personnel department this week, tapping Tableau CEO Adam Selipsky to be the new AWS CEO, replacing Andy Jassy who was named CEO of parent company Amazon in February.

The well-respected Selipsky has been CEO at Tableau since 2016, managing the business analytics software company through several years of rapid growth and then its 2019 acquisition by Salesforce for $15.7 billion.

Selipsky isn’t a stranger at AWS: He previously served as vice president of marketing, sales and support at AWS before moving to Tableau.

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VMware Launches ‘Game-Changer’ Lifecycle Partner Program

VMware wins kudos this week for launching its Customer Lifecycle Incentive program that provides partners with funding to conduct customer assessments, rewards for cooperating with other partners, and incentives for developing proof-of-concepts for customers.

Such initiatives as customer assessments and proof-of-concepts can be big expenses for solution providers and require significant investment. Partners applauded VMware’s willingness to help fund such efforts.

The program is open to all Advanced and Principal VMware partners.

Dell Technologies also wins a shoutout for its plan to significantly boost the upfront incentives for partners selling the company’s PowerStore and PowerScale systems, offering them a front-end discount of 20 points.

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Upstart Orca Security Raises $210M In Google-Backed Funding

There has been a lot of venture money thrown around in the IT security space recently. But startup Orca Security still caught everyone’s attention this week when it raised $210 million in a monster Series C round of funding.

The financing brought Orca Security’s total outside funding to $292.5 million and put its valuation at $1.2 billion. The investments came from investors CapitalG, Alphabet’s independent growth fund, and Redpoint Ventures.

Coming just two years after the company’s founding, the funding round makes Orca the fastest cybersecurity company in history to achieve a $1 billion valuation. 

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