5 Companies That Came To Win This Week

For the week ending May 3, CRN takes a look at the companies that brought their 'A' game to the channel.


The Week Ending May 3

Topping this week's roundup of companies that came to win is Dell Technologies, which unleashed a wave of new products and services this week at the Dell Technologies World show.

Also making the list this week were NetApp and Veritas for significant moves to expand their channel programs and offer new benefits and incentives for partners, SD-WAN specialist Aryaka for raising $50 million in venture funding, and Cisco for debuting next-gen Wi-Fi products that will create new opportunities for partners.

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Not everyone in the IT industry was making smart moves this week, of course. For a rundown of companies that were unfortunate, unsuccessful or just didn't make good decisions, check out this week's Five Companies That Had A Rough Week roundup.

Dell EMC Expands Storage Product Offerings, Intros Cloud Storage Services

Dell was strutting its technology stuff this week at the Dell Technologies World conference, expanding much of its storage portfolio with an eye toward helping channel partners better manage data in the cloud and other fast-changing environments for their customers.

Dell EMC unveiled major enhancements to its storage system portfolio including the midrange Unity, flagship PowerMax and unstructured data Isilon lines. The company also introduced Cloud Storage Services and debuted a new line of data protection storage software and appliances.

In a move to expand their reach in the fast-growing SD-WAN market, Dell EMC and VMware launched the new Dell EMC SD-WAN Edge powered by VMware, which bundles VMware SD-WAN by VeloCloud software as a subscription with Dell EMC hardware.

Dell EMC also told CRN that it is developing a new midrange storage line, known as "Trident or "Midrange.next," to eventually replace a number of current products, including the Unity and SC families.

NetApp Simplifies Channel Program, Extends Benefits To All Partner Types

Storage system vendor NetApp wins kudos this week for making a number of significant changes to its channel program to simplify rebates and ensure that partners of all business types – even those without a hardware focus – can benefit.

With the changes NetApp is driving for consistency around its go-to-market activities related to hybrid cloud, partner-led services, and partner rewards and levels.

One significant update to the program will change how NetApp brings on new partners, emphasizing how partners sell and to whom within a customer organization they sell, a move that's expected to expand the program beyond traditional resellers to solution providers that work with cloud services and hyper-converged infrastructure solutions.

NetApp is also ensuring that partners are automatically paid every time they bring in a new customer, debuting a new "as-a-service" certification for partners who add services to NetApp products, and increasing partner differentiation by introducing a new Global Star partner level.

Veritas Brings New Funding, Flexibility To Partner Force Program

Sticking with the topic of partner program upgrades, Veritas wins applause for revamping its channel program with the addition of new incentives and funding aimed at helping channel partners who demonstrate their commitment to growing their Veritas business.

Veritas is investing in the Veritas Partner Force program to increase performance-based benefits while accelerating partner growth, according to the developer of data management and data protection software.

The company is simplifying opportunity registration and offering bonuses of up to 12 percent for partners who close new incremental sales, both with new and existing customers. Also new is a plan to earmark a portion of its market development funds for Gold- and Platinum-level partners to develop cloud-focused customer bids.

A new strategic growth fund will help partners target new customers and new business opportunities using technologies such as the heterogeneous analytics and data management products Veritas acquired when it brought Aptare in March.

SD-WAN Specialist Aryaka Lands $50M To Fuel Hiring And ‘Channel Velocity’

SD-WAN specialist Aryaka had a good week when it raised $50 million in Series F funding led by Goldman Sachs Private Capital Investing. The funding brings the company’s total financing to $184 million.

The company, which provides SD-WAN as a subscription-based managed service, plans to apply the funding to further scaling up its business operations, going after larger deals, and hiring new sales and marketing personnel.

Some of the funding also will be applied to expanding Aryaka’s channel operations and partner program, which got a boost in February when the company hired channel veteran Olen Scott to spearhead the global partner program.

New Cisco Wi-Fi 6 Technology Will Help Partners Push 'Next-Gen Wireless' World

Cisco this week launched a new line of Wi-Fi 6-capable products that will help both partners and customers grasp "connected everything" opportunities.

The new Wi-Fi 6-capable access points, the Catalyst 9100 and the Meraki MR 45/55, offer baked-in security and are capable of communicating with popular IoT protocols such as BLE Zigbee and Thread, and can toggle between Wi-Fi and 5G. They are built using programmable chipsets that let partners take advantage of deeper analytics and build their own solutions with the products.

But the real significance of the new products is that Cisco is positioning them as more than just a hardware refresh opportunity for partners. Solution providers can use the products to help customers move into the next-gen wireless world including Internet of Things, AI and virtual reality, creating more opportunities through the entire "customer life cycle," according to Cisco.