5 things

5 Channel Partner Updates: Thursday 24 August 2017

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Good morning, channel partners. Here are five technology news updates, insights, chatter, and plenty more to start your day for Thursday, August 24, 2017.

Actually, there are 13 timely updates designed for VARs, managed services providers (MSPs), cloud services providers (CSPs), independent software vendors (ISVs), telco master agents and telco agents to sip on. Take a look.

13. Lenovo Data Center Discounts: Lenovo is offering 30 percent off hardware install and enterprise software support, according to an email promotion to partners today. We don't know if the offer is new or part of an ongoing campaign. Lenovo announced surprisingly weak data center revenues last week during the company's quarterly financial report, but vowed the business was on track for long-term growth.

12. Partner Program, Part One: Intermedia has launched a newly tiered program that rewards partners the more they sell. New monthly recurring revenue (MRR) targets are determined at the end of the calendar year. So for each level a partner achieves, they'll receive those benefits for the rest of 2017 and all of 2018, according to Tim Stanton, director of channel marketing at the CSP.

11. Partner Program, Part Two: Kentik, which specializes in network traffic intelligence, has launched a formalized global channel programJim Frey, vice president of strategic alliances, is driving the effort. Roughly 20 channel partners have joined the program.

10. Network Security Troubleshooting: Forward Networks has raised $16 million in Series B funding and also launched Forward Essentials, which enables engineers and network operators to reduce the time required to perform root-cause analysis of network and security issues.

9. Software Release Management: Plutora, a provider test management solutions that ease software development release cycles, generated a 100 percent increase in annual revenue growth in the first half of 2017, the company says.

8. Internet of Things: VMware is collaborating with ADLINK Technology to provide mutual customers with a "pre-integrated Internet of Things (IoT) solution that takes the guesswork out of selecting the hardware and software components of a typical IoT architecture." For details, keep an eye on the VMware Pulse family of IoT offerings. Related Conference: VMworld 2017 is next week.

7. Big Switch Growth: Big Switch Networks, a software-defined networking (SDN) specialist, generated triple digit growth during its fiscal year 2017, ending July 31, the company said. Demand for Big Monitoring Fabricand Big Cloud Fabric drove the sales growth. Growing relationships with Dell EMC, HP Enterprise, Nutanix, Red Hat, VMware and more than 30 other technology partners also assisted the growth, the company asserts. However, Big Switch didn't disclose actual revenue or profit figures.

ScanSource CFO Gerry Lyons
ScanSource CFO Gerry Lyons

6. Leadership: ScanSource, the specialized distributor, has named Gerald (Gerry) Lyons as executive VP and CFO. He had been senior VP and acting CFO since November 2016. 

5. Your Employee Retention: VARStaffing's Todd Billiar offers these 10 tips to help partners bolster their employee retention...

4. M&A Experts: Add Zygoquest Group to your list of potential experts to contact when you're looking to buy or sell an IT services business. The company focuses mostly on office product M&A deals... and we've seen Zygoquest associated with more than a dozen deals in the past year...

3. MSP Alerts and Notifications: Uplevel Systems is adding intelligent push notifications to its turnkey managed IaaS platform for MSPs. The so-called "iLevel Alerts" can be sent to IT solution providers' trouble-ticketing systems, smartphones, or device of choice to inform them that clients' local networks, WiFi, storage and cybersecurity need attention, the company says. The alerts integrate with traditional PSA software. Uplevel launched an MSP appliance for SMB customers in December 2016.

2. Slack Meets Autotask: Keep an eye on SLINGR's new SLINGRbot, which allows MSPs to do more inside Slack while accessing customer information from Autotask, Quickbooks and more. Early adopters apparently include Disrupt-IT, an IT services provider in San Francisco. We'll share more details soon. Related Conference: Autotask Community Live 2017 is set for September near Miami.

1.  Channel Partner Research: Looking for the latest research revealing trends in IT, manage and cloud services? Get everything you need in our ChannelE2E Syndicated Research section, where we summarize third-party research reports.

Joe Panettieri

Joe Panettieri is co-founder & editorial director of MSSP Alert and ChannelE2E, the two leading news & analysis sites for managed service providers in the cybersecurity market.