Content, 5 things

5 Channel Partner Updates: Thursday 12 October 2017

Credit: Getty Images
Good morning, channel partners. Here are five technology news updates, insights, chatter, and plenty more to start your day for Thursday, October 12, 2017. Actually, there are 16 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 16. Illegal Installs?: Microsoft software has been acquired by state organizations and firms in Russia and Crimea despite sanctions barring U.S-based companies from doing business with them, official documents show, according to Reuters. Is Microsoft to blame? Perhaps not. Some of the users gave Microsoft fictitious data about their identity, Reuters added... 15. Juniper Warning: Juniper has cut its Q3 financial expectations. The network and security equipment provider blamed weakness in the cloud computing operators. In Juniper's case, those are typically telcos in cloud clothing... 14. Oracle Questions U.S. IT Strategy: In a lengthy and strongly worded memo, Oracle apparently attacks the U.S. federal government's efforts to go digital as "false narratives." The memo opens with some upbeat perspectives -- applauding government themes like moving to cloud services; defend data; and consolidating services to increase efficiency and reduce cost. But dig deeper and the memo strongly questions the use of open source and customized software... 13. Managed Services: - Forty8Fifty Labs, the DevOps and software development subsidiary of Veristor Systems, has unveiled cloud hosting, administration and managed services for the Atlassian suite of Agile and DevOps products. The goal: Reduce customers' management burden so DevOps teams can get back to more pressing development projects, Fory8Fifty says. 12. Distribution - Analytics: Tech Data has launched a “30 Days to Cloud Analytics” program, which is designed to provide a consolidated approach for solution providers to migrate, integrate and manage their customers’ workloads to cloud business intelligence and data warehousing solutions. 11. Distribution - Cloud Services: Tech Data has agreed to distribute ServicePoint365, a provider of ISV applications for Microsoft’s cloud platform. The move could help partners to "drive deeper consumption of SharePoint Online in their Office 365 customers," ServicePoint365 says. But wait. There's more. Proceed to page two of two with complete confidence that items 10 to 1 await you. Welcome to page two of two for today. Here are the 10 remaining items for your timely consumption. 10. Cloud Services: Ingram Micro has expanded its relationship with Seidor, a multinational IT integrator, to power that company's cloud business. Seidor is integrating the Ingram Micro Cloud Platform with its SAP system, which will enable the company to fully automate its customer lifecycle, from service provisioning to billings, the two companies say.   9. AT&T Partner Program: AT&T has launched a "simple, easy-to-manage, back-up plan for wireless wide area network (WWAN)." The new plan makes entry into mobility resell easier for wireline-centric solution providers, the company says. Also, the company has released an API for Mobility Port Management. The API lets solution providers qualify, create, check, update, cancel and activate port requests, AT&T says. On the Internet of Things front, AT&T Partner Exchange has more than doubled its IoT activations since launching an IoT certification programIoT Readiness Assessment and other channel enablers in April 2017, the company says. 8. MSP Coaching: Service Leadership and Sea-Level Operations have inked a strategic alliance that brings Service Leadership Index benchmarking to Sea-Level’s clients worldwide. Sea-Level specializes in MSP coaching. The confidential, quarterly Service Leadership Index report provides 80 critical best-in-class metrics, enabling performance improvements in all areas of the business, the companies say. Paul Dippell leads Service Leadership. MSP veteran Rex Frank is president of Sea-Level. 7. ITSM: The Top IT service management suite vendors of 2017 are... these companies, according to Gartner. 6. Managed Network Services: Paessler AG has unveiled PRTG in the cloud, a  cloud-based version of the company's unified network monitoring service. Think of it as a higher-end alternative to Auvik Networks, which has gained momentum with SMB-centric MSPs. 5. Multi-Cloud Management: BMC has unveiled a "comprehensive strategy for multi-cloud management." the effort includes tools like TrueSight Cloud Cost Control and SecOps Policy Service. 4. Managed Security: Barracuda CEO BJ Jenkins says the company's partner shift toward managed security services is accelerating. We'll share more details soon. 3. M&A -MSP: Thrive Networks has acquired Precision IT as part of an MSP push into the New York financial services vertical.
Stan Levy
Steve Raymund
2. Breaking - ConnectWise Board: Former Tech Data CEO and Chairman Steve Raymund and Grant Thornton veteran Stan Levy have joined ConnectWise's board of directors. Former ConnectWise President Matt Nachtrab, now CEO of eFolder, is no longer listed as a board member. Third-party representation on ConnectWise's board marks a major inflection point for the company. We'll share more thoughts soon. 1. CompuCom Shrinkage Details: CompuCom has seen its net sales shrink from $1.20 billion in 2015 (adjusted) to $1.01 billion in 2017, ChannelE2E has confirmed. At the same time, the company has effectively managed its EBITDA, which has ranged from $93 million in 2015 to $85 million in 2016 and $98 million in 2017, ChannelE2E has confirmed. Those financial metrics and more have surfaced as Office Depot moves to acquire CompuCom for $1 billion. We'll share more in-depth analysis and financial metrics soon. PS: Our earlier report of Office Depot paying a lofty 10X EBITDA for CompuCom was absolutely on the mark.
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.