5 Hot Profit-Driving Plays For VMware Partners

Taking Charge With VMware

VMware held its Partner Exchange conference in Las Vegas this week, unleashing new partner incentives and partner plays in fast-growth markets such as virtualization management and desktop virtualization. The theme of this year's conference: "Taking Charge." Here are five ways partners can take charge with VMware to drive big sales and profits.

VMware Operations Manager

There may be no bigger bang-for-the-buck play for partners looking to yield big profits than VMware's new Operations Manager proactive virtualization monitoring and management software. VMware, in fact, got the Partner Exchange party started by announcing an additional up-front margin accelerator for partners that sell the Operations Manager virtualization monitoring and management software with vSphere. The additional margin stacked on top of all of the other VMware incentives can bring the total margin on a deal for vSphere with Operations Manager to a whopping 51 percent.

Colleen Kapase, senior director of partner readiness for VMware, called the vSphere Operations Manager play the No. 1 initiative partners can undertake to significantly increase their profitability. She said she expects thousands of partners to be selling the vSphere with Operations Manager by the end of the year.

vCloud Suite

vCloud Suite is the foundation of the VMware software-defined data center. It takes VMware beyond just virtualization into storage and networking. Partners need to make a significant investment to sell vCloud Suite, but those that have taken the plunge said they are driving big profits. The vCloud Suite offering provides partners a total stackable margin incentive of 41 percent with 25 percent to 27 percent bigger deal sizes and $15 of services for every dollar of software sold, according to VMware.

Bob Cagnazzi, CEO of Presidio, a $1.3 billion national solution provider, said he expects Presidio's VMware business to be up least 20 percent this year powered by products such as vCloud Suite. Presidio's VMware business is broadening beyond simple virtualization as customers embrace the software-defined data center, he said.

VMware Horizon View

The new Horizon View is VMware's biggest bet yet to ignite the desktop virtualization market and harness the BYOD market phenomenon. VMware Chief Marketing Officer Rick Jackson said the new offering provides a "huge leap" in productivity gains from workers who will now be able to choose any device at any time they want to get to critical corporate data. By VMware's count, Horizon Suite will effectively result in 30 minutes of additional productivity gains a day for the typical knowledge worker. That adds up to 625,000 hours of productivity gains in a year -- the equivalent of adding 300 new employees to the payroll just by rolling out Horizon Suite, said Jackson. And if that isn't enough, VMware is investing heavily to drive end-user computing sales.

Cloud Credit Program

VMware is stepping up its hybrid cloud offensive with a new program aimed at incenting more solution providers. The cloud credit program allows customers to purchase prepaid credits from their solution provider of choice and exchange them to get access to IaaS offerings from VMware service provider partners. The program gives solution providers up-front revenue for driving cloud services sales through VMware service provider partners.

Keith Norbie, vice president of Nexus, the Minnetonka, Minn., office of Atlanta-based solution provider Stratos Management Systems, and a VMware enterprise partner, called the cloud credit program a breakthrough offering. "It is about being at the center of how customers want to consume IT," he said. "The cloud credits go back to you as a solution provider. It's a big win."

vSphere Data Protection Advanced

vSphere Data Protection Advanced is part of VMware's move to take its virtualization leadership position into storage and networking. Think of Data Protection Advanced as data protection and recovery on steroids for midsize customers. Raghu Raghuram, executive vice president of cloud infrastructure and management for VMware, said the product provides up to four times faster recovery time and four times more efficient data deduplication.