5 things

5 Channel Partner Updates: 24 Dec 2015

Credit: Getty Images

Good morning, channel partners. Here are five technology news updates, insights, chatter and so much more to start your day for Thursday, December 24, 2015.

Actually, today's update involves 12 items for VARs, managed services providers (MSPs), cloud services providers (CSPs) and independent software vendors (ISVs) to sip on.

12. New Peer Groups?: Ulistic is the latest organization seeking to launch peer groups for IT service providers. The MSP-focused marketing company may test the waters with a 12-company peer group that meets quarterly in 2016. The peer members will come from non-competing geographies. Several organizations, most notably HTG Peer Groups, are already in the MSP and IT services market.

11. Chief Data Officers?: Gartner says 90 percent of large organizations will have Chief Data Officers by 2019. Hmmm... Call me skeptical. I know quite a few businesses and government organizations now have CDOs. But I've tracked the hiring of those executives for more than a year -- and only a few announcements surface each month. Check in with me and Gartner in 2019. I bet CDO penetration in large organizations is closer to 40 or 50 percent at that time, far below Gartner's 90 percent forecast.

10. App and Network Performance Monitoring: Keep an eye on IBM's new Alert Notification Service, which is built for IBM Cloud and Bluemix. The service  sends early, critical alerts to key team members (MSPs, app developers, DevOps, etc.) when their applications are experiencing network performance issues.

9. Internet of Things Management: PTC has acquired Kepware for about $100 million. The deal could help service providers focused on the Internet of Things and connected factories. Watch for two IoT management platforms -- PTC ThingWorx and Kepware's KEPServerEX -- to converge, assisting service providers focused on manufacturing, oil and gas, building automation, power and utilities...

8. Government IT Contracts: Avnet Government Solutions has expanded its General Services Administration (GSA) schedule to include Catalogic Software. Hmmm... Catalogic's software organizations manage and orchestrate the use of data for mission-critical operations.

7. Storage IPO: Nutanix, focused on converged storage, is preparing to go public. The company's IPO will seek to raise about $200 million. These are interesting times in the storage market, where disrupters and entrenched companies are maneuvering in multiple ways to gain a competitive advantage. Pure Storage IPOed in October; Dell is striving to buy EMC; NetApp just acquired SolidFire for $870 million. Storage is dead. Long live Flash Storage, Converged Storage and Software-Defined Storage.

6. App Building for Resellers: Bizness Apps is looking for partners to sell mobile apps to small businesses. The white label program gives resellers "full brand control" over a mobile app builder platform. So, you can design mobile apps for your customers under your own company brand. Hmmm... but does the Bizness Apps platform work? Apparently the answer is an overwhelming yes. Bizness Apps  powers more than 100,000 apps around the globe, the company claims.

5. Hotel Hacks: Hyatt is the latest hotel chain to disclose that its payment processing systems have been hacked. Hilton, Starwood and Mandarin Oriental have confirmed similar hacks this year. The takeaway for channel partners: Lock down customers' point of sale (POS) and every link in the payment processing chain.

4. Fresh Funding: Palantir Technologies, a big-data startup, has raised $200 million -- bringing to total funding for the company to $1.9 billion. Ahem... the company has also raised 12 financing rounds -- an extremely high number. But this isn't your typical startup. The 12-year-old "startup" has data mining software used by the CIA, FBI and other top intelligence organizations...

3. Google Enterprise Sales Strategy: We recently described the Google for Work partner program strategy. But how is Google's cloud team selling direct to enterprise customers? New clues, involving Diane Greene, are here. Among the insights: "Customers want a single interface to sales and support and services," Greene told The Wall Street Journal. Hmmm... That's not exactly a revolutionary statement. But it's clear that Greene -- the former VMware co-founder and CEO -- will need to do as she overhaul's Google's approach to enterprise cloud sales.

2. Top 100 Technology Entrepreneurs: Complete the ChannelE2E 100 survey and you -- or your company -- could be recognized as one of the technology industry's top entrepreneurs, startups or exits for 2015. Technically, the survey deadline has passed. But we've left the survey link active for those who want to sneak into the submission process before we finalize survey results in January 2016, and announce honorees later in Q1 2016.

1. Holiday Hours: We'll be closed Friday, December 25, for Christmas. We'll offer some content updates Monday through Thursday (Dec. 28-31), returning to a full content schedule on Monday, January 4.

More: Read all of our daily 5 Channel Partner UpdatesPlusSubscribe to our daily enewsletter. Thanks to those who already have. 


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.