IBM has launched a complete review of its local software distribution strategy.
On Wednesday the company issued a request for proposals, as a closed tender, to find additional distributors for its software brands, such as Tivoli, Websphere, Lotus, Rational and Information Management.
Express Data is currently the sole local distributor of IBM software.
The review will also cover how partners are incentivised to drive IBM software.
IBM New Zealand software manager Phill Patton says the move is the “next evolution” in IBM’s go-to-market model for its software and comes after a lengthy and detailed consultation process.
“We’ve decided there is a requirement to make changes that will ensure the effectiveness of our distribution is maximised, and that our business partner community can attain greater benefits than they currently receive from the ever-growing IBM portfolio of products.”
Patton adds IBM’s current model of selling all software through the channel will be maintained.
IBM will soon host briefings for business partners in Auckland and Wellington, to inform them of the review process.
Initial responses to the RFP are required by Wednesday, March 26.
Although Express Data has had exclusive distribution of IBM software since 2002, general manager of sales and marketing Paul Plester says the company is not concerned about sharing the agency with a competitor.
“IBM has taken great pains to ensure Express Data that we’re under no threat; we will have continued distribution in New Zealand. And like all things sometimes competition is good.”
Plester adds Express Data is proud of what it has achieved with the range. “We are pretty proud of what we have done in terms of taking away a lot of the complexity around IBM software.”
ED attended IBM’s local Lotusphere Comes To You channel event last week and is impressed with the software the vendor has in its pipeline.
“IBM has a lot of great products coming and it is probably time to look how those go to market. We’re showing those products this week at our collaboration showcase. We are showing Lotus Notes and Domino interacting with Cisco and other products.”