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CEO Arvind Krishna: 10 Keys To IBM’s $1B Partner Ecosystem Bet

IBM CEO Arvind Krishna says the company’s $1 billion partner ecosystem bet is driving ’clarity’ in partner incentives, segmentation and tools. Here is a look at 10 keys to Krishna’s partner ecosystem bet.

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IBM’s Global Business Services Strategy

There are these big ecosystems. There’s an SAP ecosystem. There is a Salesforce ecosystem. There is a Microsoft ecosystem. There is an Amazon [Web Services] ecosystem. There is a ServiceNow ecosystem. So there are these big partners on whom I want to grow multibillion-dollar GBS [Global Business Services] practices in implementing the ISV at a client. You might say, ’Why would the other one be interested?’ Because if we have the skills to implement faster, they get to revenue faster. By the way, if they get to revenue faster they can sell more there.

For my teams that establishes a lot of trust with the client. You can get other projects outside that ecosystem. And, by the way, in almost all cases, those ISVs have agreed that technologies from us will not usually get embedded but will often be bolted on side by side.

With ServiceNow we agreed that our Watson AI Ops technologies integrate with how ServiceNow does ticket management. That means for the clients previously they could do ticket management. Now they can also do problem triage and get an answer to where your issues might lie. That is a massive advantage.

Once we do the technology integration that is not confined to Global Business Services, any partner gets access to that.

That’s an expansion. As opposed to just being IBM technologies I am adding to the ecosystem.

I am getting a flywheel going that says I will be one of the most open companies, not just bringing myself, but also bringing my technology ecosystem to help with my partners.

We now have huge practices in Global Business Services. We have become from a standing start the biggest Red Hat partner in terms of certified skills. So that’s a pretty good flywheel.

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