CRN's 2015 Annual Report Card Winners

Top Of The Pyramid

Each year, CRN surveys solution providers to find out what they really think about their IT vendor partners. CRN's Annual Report Card asks partners to evaluate vendors in 22 product categories across 18 criteria in product innovation, support and partnership.

To celebrate the 30th anniversary of the Annual Report Card, CRN presented the winning vendors with their trophies in a private ceremony at XChange 2015 in our nation's capital, Washington, D.C.

Take a look at the vendors that took home top marks this year and watch our behind the scenes coverage of the 30th Annual ARC Awards.


Microsoft celebrated back-to-back wins in the Business Analytics category, beating out Oracle and IBM.

The Redmond, Wash.-based software giant also scored the highest in partnership in the Data & Information Management category.

Displaying the trophies for Microsoft is Eric Martorano, general manager of U.S. Partner Sales.


Sweep! Sophos was the big winner in this year's ARC awards, bringing home trophies in three categories, including sweeps in Client Security Software and Network Security Appliances. And despite ceding the support top score to Kaspersky in Network Security Software, Burlington, Mass.-based Sophos still won the category overall.

The Client Security Software and Network Security Appliances wins mark back-to-back victories for Sophos. The high marks in Network Security Software give Sophos a victory in the first time it has entered this product category.

Showing off the trophies for Sophos is Erin Malone, vice president, channel sales, North America.

Kaspersky Lab

Kaspersky Lab scored a win for support in the Network Security Software category.

Celebrating the award for Kaspersky is, from left, Jennifer Reid, senior channel marketing program manager; Kim Stevens, director of channel sales; and Ivana Abruzesse, senior channel marketing manager.

Cisco Systems

Cisco showed its dominance in Collaboration Software and Enterprise Networking Infrastructure, posting clean sweeps in both categories. San Jose, Calif.-based Cisco dethroned Microsoft in its first entry into the Collaboration Software category. The Enterprise Networking Infrastructure victory marks the fourth consecutive category win for Cisco.

Cisco also received a product innovation nod in the Converged Infrastructure Systems category.

Hoisting the hardware for Cisco is Ken Trombetta (far left), vice president, software, solutions and architectures, Worldwide Partner Organization; and Steve Benvenuto (second from right), senior director, partner programs, Worldwide Partner Organization.


EMC dominated the Network Storage (SMB) category, sweeping the category for a second straight year. The Hopkinton, Mass.-based storage giant also locked up an overall win in the Data Protection Software category, edging out a newcomer to the category, Carbonite.

EMC also notched the highest marks for product innovation in the Enterprise Network Storage category.

Basking in the ARC glory is EMC DDirector of North America Channel Sales Dave Rogers.


IBM sealed its victory over EMC in the Enterprise Network Storage category by winning nine of the 12 criteria in support and partnership. But the real shining moment of this year's ARC for IBM was in the Midrange Server categories. Armonk, NY-based IBM swept the category by snapping up 16 of the 18 criteria in product innovation, support and partnership.

Neal G. Callahan (right), vice president of North America systems hardware channels, and Dave Carlquist, vice president worldwide systems channels, show off IBM's new hardware.


It's no surprise Xerox partners are pleased with what the company does best, awarding the Norwalk, Conn.–based vendor with category sweeps in both Multifunction Printers and Workgroup Color Printers. The Multifunction Printers win gives Xerox its third straight win in the category.

Xerox also swept the Workgroup Color Printers category, beating out HP with top scores in partnership, product innovation and support.

Here, Tom Gall, director of channel marketing, celebrates the victories.


Oracle took the top honors in the Data & Information Management category, edging out defending champion Microsoft. With wins in product innovation and support, Oracle secured the victory over Microsoft by a point.

The Redwood City, Calif.-based company also scored a win for product innovation in Business Analytics.

Tim Dwyer, director, channel go to market, shows off the trophy for Oracle.


Dell proved resilient in 2015, beating HP and Cisco to secure back-to-back victories in the Converged Infrastructure Systems category. Dell scored highest in support and partnership.

Round Rock, Texas-based Dell was also able to ride the support and partnership wave to a win in the Volume Servers category, edging out last year's winner, HP.

Dell scooped up a third ARC trophy, getting the nod for support in the Tablets category.

Mary Catherine Wilson, director, Dell Partner Direct marketing and programs, shows off Dell's ARC awards.


Carbonite made a splash as a new entrant in the Data Protection Software category, winning both the support and partnership awards.

Holding the trophy for Boston-based Carbonite is Adam Larrabee, manager of channel sales.


Palo Alto, Calif.-based VMware posted a big win over Citrix Systems and defending champion Microsoft in the Desktop & Server Virtualization category. VMware checked the win column in product innovation, support and partnership.

Frank Rauch (third from left), vice president, Americas Partner Organization, and the VMware crew celebrate the win.


ConnectWise hit big in Managed Services, making a clean sweep of the category. This is only the second year that the ARC has included Managed Services as a product category. Tampa, Fla.-based ConnectWise topped last year's winner, SolarWinds, by posting massive gains in the Quality and Reliability, Computability & Ease of Integration, Technical Innovation and Post-Sales Support criteria.

Chief Revenue Officer Adam Slutskin was on hand to accept the award for ConnectWise.


Comcast broke out the brooms in Network Connectivity, winning in product innovation, support and partnership for a clean sweep.

Accepting the award for Philadelphia-based Comcast is Craig Schlagbaum, vice president of indirect channels.

Ruckus Wireless

Ruckus Wireless scored big wins in product innovation and support for an overall win in Networking Hardware (SMB) for the third year in a row. Sunnyvale, Calif.-based Ruckus secured the victory by narrowly edging D-Link. Cisco, the last vendor to claim the crown before Ruckus, finished third.

Celebrating Ruckus' victory is Ron Gill, vice president, Americas enterprise sales.


D-Link took top honors for partnership in the Networking Hardware (SMB) category. The Taiwanese networking vendor narrowly missed a win in the product innovation category, falling to overall category winner Ruckus by less than a percentage point.

Pictured here is Roger Kao, CEO.


Intel continued its ARC dominance in Processors by posting an uncontested victory in the category. The Santa Clara, Calif.-based vendor won the Processors category outright for the third consecutive year and improved upon last year's overall score by almost 5 percentage points.

Todd Garrigues, director of North America reseller channels, was at XChange to accept the trophy for Intel.


HP notched a win for product innovation in the Volume Servers category and made a clean sweep of the Notebooks/Mobile Computers category. The 2015 victory in Notebooks/Mobile Computers marks the third consecutive win for the Palo Alto, Calif.-based vendor.

Rich Papaioannou, director, North America channel marketing, holds HP's trophies.


The Tablets category has only been around for two of the ARC's 30 years but it's a category that is seeing some stiff competition. The category's first-ever winner, Lenovo, defended its title in 2015 by holding off Dell by 1 percentage point. Lenovo scored top marks in product innovation and partnership to win the category overall.

Stephen Miller, brand ambassador for Lenovo, was on hand to accept the Tablets award.