IBM NEW Zealand is likely to become a Cisco Gold partner by default following Big Blue’s purchase of Cisco’s original Gold partner, Logical CSI.
The pair already develops product and services, such as those around IP security, that IBM sells directly to customers here.
“I haven’t really thought about it but it’s a very good point,” Cisco New Zealand manager David Barker says. “They’ll probably get [Gold accreditation] immediately. You could pretty safely say that is one of the reasons why [IBM] made the purchase. Logical folds in under IBM.”
IBM announced on March 29 its acquisition of Logical as part of a $US65 million ($100 million) buy-out of the New Zealand and Australia operations of systems integrator Logicalis, which is owned by South African company Datatec.
Barker says IBM, which is a Silver partner, has all the skills, spare parts and demonstration laboratory requirements to become a Gold partner. The other top-tier resellers are Hewlett-Packard, Datacraft and Telecom, which was Cisco’s 2003 partner of the year for New Zealand and Australia.
Cisco is not looking for another company to fill IBM’s Silver position, Barker says.
IBM spokesperson Jeremy Seed says the Cisco accreditation was not a “driver” behind the purchase because IBM Australia is already a Gold partner. “But it was a nice-to-have, the icing on the cake,” he says.
Seed says IBM is not asking Logical CSI staff to apply for their jobs; instead, the company is conducting staff meetings and issuing employees questionnaires so that it can do a stock take of skills. “We’re asking things like, ‘where do you fit into the big picture, what skills do you have and what accounts do you have?’.” Administration and other areas that have duplication may lose jobs, he says.
Meanwhile, Barker says Cisco and IBM have had a couple of wins and have at least two deals in the pipeline for the joint IP security bundles they announced in July last year. He was unable to name the customers.