5 New Partner Programs That Networking Partners Need To Know About

New Partner Programs

March was an exceptionally busy month for networking vendors in unveiling new partner programs for their channel communities

With recurring revenue and application development skills becoming more crucial for solution providers, network vendors such as ShoreTel, PacketLight Networks and LiveAction launched new programs this month aimed at increasing profitability for channel partners. Sales incentives and training for managed service providers and application developers was top of mind for networking vendors hoping to successfully transition their channel partners into the cloud age while the Internet of Things market gets ready to explode.

Here are five vendors who unveiled new channel programs in March that partners need to know about.

ShoreTel Summit Program

On March 23, unified communications and collaboration vendor ShoreTel unveiled a new partner program for businesses and developers who build voice and SMS applications on its ShoreTel Summit platform. The new Summit Partner Program offers certification training, development support and co-marketing activities to enable partners to develop communications applications and accelerate time to market, said the Sunnyvale, Calif.-based vendor.

The program supports three types of partners: Solution, Application and Module. Solution partners leverage Summit to develop voice and SMS applications or integrate communications capabilities into customers' existing environments. Application Partners -- typically ISVs or SaaS providers -- offer apps built on Summit or use its Communications Platform-as-a-Service architecture to power communications capabilities in their flagship applications. Module partners provide programming components that other developers can use as building blocks to enhance the capabilities of Summit apps.

LiveAction MSP Program

Network management and visibility specialist LiveAction launched its new Managed Service Provider Partner Program where MSPs can take advantage of LiveAction's LiveNX network performance analytics platform. The MSP program falls under the company's broader partner program to allow partners access to a partner portal, rebates, market development funding and other incentives.

The Palo Alto, Calif.-based vendor touts LiveNX as a platform that provides situational awareness, semantic-based analysis, and modeling for continuous network insights, troubleshooting and service assurance.

Ooma ISP Program

VoIP provider Ooma launched a new partner program for internet service providers: the Ooma ISP Partner Program. The program allows partners access to its cloud-based phone system and voice services, consolidated billing and a co-branded activation page. ISPs can earn recurring residual income on Ooma's phone services including the Ooma Office Business service, its cloud-based phone system coupled with either analog, IP-based or mobile phone products. Partners can offer a competitive phone service.

The Palo Alto, Calif.-based vendor is also providing online training and allowing partners to sell Ooma's services to residential customers. The vendor initially launched its first-ever partner program in August.

PacketLight Inaugural Partner Program

Optical networking specialist PacketLight Networks launched its first-ever partner program for solution providers, dubbed the Channel Partner Program (CPP). The program has 5-tiers that provides partners product training, customization, pre-and post-sales support and incentive-based pricing.

The vendor will also share business leads with partners, provide technical support 24x7 and offer customized design blueprints from its sales team to help with network designs and assist in presentations and demonstrations.

"We developed CPP to provide our partners with tailored marketing and support services in order to help them cope with the growing data demands outpacing infrastructure with on-demand video, streaming, social, business continuity and security requirements," said PacketLight CEO Koby Reshef, in a statement.

Arrow Announces IoT Program

Sean Kerins, president of Arrow Electronics Enterprise Computing Solutions (ECS) business, told CRN this month that the company will roll out a new partner program targeting the industrial market specifically around Internet of Things.

"Think about how attractive it will be to [partners] in that program to have access to a components business of significant size and scale across the globe," said Kerins. "We've had plenty of our existing ECS partner relationships come forward looking for help and enablement as it relates to penetrating the IoT market."

Kerins said the program will be geared towards both new and existing partners with "intelligent device and industrial IT skillsets."