Oracle has launched new channel initiatives designed to expand business for existing partners, and in New Zealand is working closely with distributor Avnet to implement training and marketing resources.
“We are much more closely aligned with our value add distributors and have put in an actual two-tier model that probably has more programming and depth around it and adds more into the whole partner community,” says Patricia Nance, ANZ alliance and channels manager. “We’re still very strong as a direct sales force. Be we are looking at how we can grow our partner business with the ones we have as opposed to seeking a ton of new partners.”
Oracle has around 70 partners in New Zealand, but the company is targeting about 30 of those for building up new lines of business. Avnet is running 'bootcamp' training programmes to train partners in areas they havent worked in before. Both Oracle and its distributor are building up marketing funds.
This local reinvigoration of Oracle’s two-tier partner ecosystem encompasses new channel specialisations announced globally in October at the vendor’s OpenWorld 2012 conference.
These include Cloud Builder, for partners that want to sell and implement hardware and software offerings; and the Cloud Resale programme to take Oracle cloud services to market, among other specialisations. The programme gives resellers the opportunity to bring to market applications optimised for Oracle hardware: databases for Exadata, middleware for Exalogic and business intelligentce for Exalytics branded machines.
Nance says rebates on new services add three percent to eight percent on margin.
Michael Costigan, Avnet's VP of marketing and business innovation in ANZ, says he is enthusastic about Oracle’s strategy.
“It’s encouraging to see Oracle’s investment in us,” Costigan says. “The rebates, marketing and enablement reaffirms Oracle commitment to the channel. That’s something we haven’t seen before and it’s exciting for us.”
Avnet has one BDM in New Zealand for Oracle, but expects to commit more staff in the next six months, and will focus on making more techcnical resrources available.
Oracle has also restructured its channel teams to look after the whole solution set for particular partners rather than focusing on particular hardware or software lines of business. It’s hoped, also, that the cloud offerings will bring resellers more business among smaller organisations as service providers.
Costigan says the realignment of Oracle’s channel responds to what Avnet customers have wanted.
“They come to us asking how do we know more about this or that solution,” says Costigan. “Traditional Sun partners, if you will, are very keen to understand the apps business from Oracle, for example. That’s the first time that Oracle have opened that up to VADs.”