Channel technologies, Channel partner programs

SaaSMAX: Two Businesses, One Focus

Double Down
Dina Moskowitz

SaaSMAX has unveiled a new SaaS reseller commission platform. The move comes a few months after the company unveiled PartnerOptimizer -- which helps vendors to find qualified channel partners. Piece the two moves together, and it's clear that CEO Dina Moskowitz is doubling down on channel-driven solutions that leverage business intelligence behind the scenes.

When I first heard about SaaSMAX a few years ago, I wondered if the site would be nothing more than logos that lead channel partners to third-party SaaS offerings. Instead, SaaSMAX has become a true VAD (value-added distributor) and online marketplace for SaaS solutions.

The latest step involves a new SaaS reseller commission platform, which makes it "easier than ever to promote and resell great SaaS software and track commissions in a single place," the company claims. The system also allows partners to activate and manage digital marketing campaigns for the SaaS offerings.

Channel DNA

Moskowitz, a digital storage veteran, launched the commercial SaaSMax platform in Q3 2013. Instead of working in a bubble, she has engaged several channel veterans to better serve partners. Key names to know include VP Reseller Partnerships Clinton Gatewood (a Zenith Infotech veteran) and Twelve Leadership Consulting Founder Ted Cole (formerly AdTran's channel chief).

Ted Cole

Cole worked closely with Moskowitz on the PartnerOptimizer platform, which is built for channel teams that are trying to find the right channel partners and prospects. PartnerOptimizer leverages IBM Watson (i.e., big data analytics) to help technology companies with enterprise-level channel partner recruitment and management.

Not a head-on rival to traditional partner relationship management (PRM) systems, PartnerOptimizer seems to be carving out a new niche for itself. A few weeks back, Moskowitz and Cole described the PartnerOptimizer journey to me -- from initial concept to the platform's actual launch. The journey involved a healthy mix of internal R&D coupled with plenty of discovery from channel partners. Plus, Moskowitz and Cole had a healthy dose of their own channel DNA to pump into the system.

Come to think of  it, I wonder if PartnerOptimizer marries SaaSMAX members (i.e., resellers in that system) with vendor channel teams. Also, I don't know if PartnerOptimizer has "taken off." But it's clear that SaaSMax doesn't intend to be a one-hit wonder in the channel. Similar to how ChannelEyes CEO Jay McBain has branched that company out into additional partner solutions (see ChannelCandy and OPTYX), Moskowitz seems determined to double down on the channel with additional services and platforms.

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.