SMB bundles smooth IBM deals

SMB bundles smooth IBM deals

COMPETITIVE prices, fast delivery and predictable margins are elements of a new initiative IBM has launched to make selling its server and storage products to smaller enterprises easier.

SystemSeller was rolled out in New Zealand last month and is made of preconfigured and pre-priced bundles of IBM eServer and TotalStorage offerings.

The bundles are based on products which are typically sold to SMBs, and are priced and configured to meet the specific needs of these users, says Catherine Blinkhorn, manager of IBM New Zealand’s systems and technology group.

“It will make doing business with us easier and more dependable,” she says.

Pricing will be up to 30% lower than list prices, adds Blinkhorn, saying in the past resellers had to apply for special bid pricing to take advantage of SMB opportunities.

To guarantee high availability, IBM is working with distributors IT Wholesale and Ingram Micro to ensure the products are in ready supply at all times.

“Stock is a key factor for partners,” says Blinkhorn. The scheme includes special incentives for partners, who will know upfront what the rebates and margins are.

“They do not have to spend their days configuring pricing and can deliver the product quickly. This makes the cost of each sale lower and enables them to move to the next opportunity faster,” says Blinkhorn.

The company is supporting the programme with a comprehensive promotional campaign, which includes advertising, direct marketing and lead-generation efforts.

Partners can also use templates of promotional materials for their own marketing activities.

“They have access to some unique and quirky IBM adverts,” says Blinkhorn.

Although the programme was announced in the US in February, IBM wanted to customise the programme with input from local partners before launching it here.

SystemSeller kicks off with packages around IBM’s Intel-based xSeries servers and DS 300 and 400 SMB storage products. Some bundles will also include Microsoft Small Business Server. Bundles for pSeries servers and DS 4000 storage hardware will be released later this year.

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