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NetApp Channel Chief Jim Elder: Big Changes, Opportunities Coming For Partners

Jim Elder tells CRN in a wide-ranging conversation about his priorities for NetApp in 2020, how the company is reorganizing its channels, and how it plans to compete against Dell EMC's new PowerStore storage line.

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What's NetApp's current thinking in terms of its NetApp Insight conference, typically held in the Fall. Are you still hoping to do a live conference? Or are you starting to consider alternatives?

Our Insight EMEA event we just completed a couple weeks ago was a completely virtual event. It was an incredible event.

We're evaluating our options. NetApp has extended our work from home out through the end of October. So between now and then I wouldn't expect us to be also driving any big partner or end-customer in-person events. We're certainly looking at how we engage virtually. But for me personally, the channel's a people business. I can't wait to get the restrictions lifted and get back on planes to go be with my partners, and I look forward to when we are able to renew our in-person events.

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