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5 Channel Partner Updates: 25 August 2016

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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 25 2016. Actually, there are 16 entries for VARs, managed services providers (MSPs), cloud services providers (CSPs) and independent software vendors (ISVs) and telco master agents and telco agents to sip on. Take a look… 16. Channel Philanthropy: CompTIA's Channel Chief Giving Circle is marching rapidly toward a $200,000 giving goal. More than 75 organizations have received donations from the philanthropic effort. As of mid-August, 95 senior executives from technology product vendors, distributors, solution providers, industry associations and other organizations have signed on to the Channel  Chief Giving Circle, which is committed to donating $200,000 this year to worthy charities, CompTIA says. 15. Free Windows Server 2016 vs VMware: Well, sort of. Businesses that switch from VMware vSphere to Windows Server Hyper-V can gain free licenses for Windows Server 2016 -- which is set to ship in September. However, the free Microsoft Windows Server 2016 offer has plenty of fine print. Microsoft has been promoting a similar free SQL Server offer to Oracle customers. 14. Tech Data Earnings: The distribution giant this morning announced Q2 2017 results that were slightly weaker than wall street expected. Tech Data's net sales were $6.4 billion, down 3 percent vs. Q2 2016. Gross profit was $316.5 million, down 3 percent. CEO Bob Dutkowsky says the company executed well in Q2 despite a weaker-than-expected IT spending environment. We'll share more details later today. 13. HP Inc. Earnings: The PC giant delivered stronger-than-expected quarterly earnings and revenues yesterday, but the company's printer business continues to contract -- which has Wall Street concerned. We're checking to see when those long-awaited 3D printers will start generating revenue for HP Inc. (HPQ). 12. Workday Roller Coaster: Workday's Q2 revenues slightly beat Wall Street's expectations but the company's profits were weaker than expected. Shares initially fell but then rallied as Wall Street listened to the company's earnings call late yesterday. The company offers popular SaaS-based financial and HR applications... 11. First Driverless Taxi: For anyone who is still dismissing the arrival of autonomous cars -- the first driverless taxi began work on Thursday in a limited public trial on the streets of Singapore, Reuters reports. Developer nuTonomy invited a select group of people to download their app and ride for free in its "robo-taxi" in a western Singapore hi-tech business district, hoping to get feedback ahead of a planned dull launch of the service in 2018, the wire services said. 10. Person to Person Payment App: U.S. banks are launching Zelle (formerly clearXchange), a person-to-person payment service that's positioned to compete with PayPal's Venmo. Early Warning, a bank-owned organization, will run the newly branded payment service, The Wall Street Journal reports. 9. Cloud Platforms: Walmart's OpenOps open source cloud management platform could become part of OpenStack, the private and public cloud software alternative to Amazon Web Services, ZDnet reports. Walmart has stepped up its software and open source efforts as the retail giant strives to digitize all portions of its business. Click here for Page 2 -- featuring no pay toll and instant access to items 8 to 1 on our list.  Welcome to page two. Here's the rest of today's update. 8. MSP Security Management Dashboard: Sophos EMail is now available within the Sophos Central management dashboard. Sophos EMail wraps security around applications like Office 365, Microsoft Exchange 2013 and Google Apps for Work. The Sophos Central management dashboard is a single pane of glass for customers and MSPs. Sophos VP Scott Barlow explains Sophos Central in this recent ChannelE2E podcast. 7. IBM Cloud Leaders Exiting?: JP Morgan Chase has hired Harish Grama to oversee the banking giant's overall cloud services strategy, The Wall Street Journal says. He most recently led software development for IBM's cloud unit. Ahem... This is the third major IBM cloud leader to exit in recent weeks. We'll share more details soon. 6.  Cloud Management Headaches: Roughly 80 percent of businesses underestimate the time and costs required to maintain resources in the cloud, according to Wakefield Research and Logicworks. That represents a major opportunity for VARs, MSPs and CSPs to reset customer expectations  -- and ease the burden of cloud management. 5. Data Center Talent: FTE Networks Inc. has named Mike Bonewitz as its new CTO, where he will be responsible for developing and driving the company's next generation business of data center and Compute-to-the-Edge services. Bonewitz succeeds Carlie Ancor, who will transition into supporting the company's major accounts sales strategy. Bonewitz is a veteran of Nexius and is an expert in the Open Compute Project -- an open source data center initiative initially led by Facebook. 4. Top 1000 Mid-Market Companies: You hear the terms "mid-market" or "midsize" companies all the time. But what companies fit that description? CEO Connection has an answer -- identifying the top 1000 mid-market businesses with annual sales of $100 million to $3 billion. You can find the list here. 3. Lenovo India SMB Leader: Lenovo has named Pankaj Harjai to head the company's Small and Medium Business (SMB) vertical within India. 2. Cisco Ends Nutanix Relationship: Cisco Systems apparently has kicked Nutanix out of its solution partner program. The reason? Cisco's Hyperflex technology directly completes with Nutanix's hyperconverged technology, according to an email to partners viewed by The Register. Nutanix, meanwhile, apparently has growing momentum running on Lenovo servers in the midmarket. 1. VMWorld 2016 Coverage: Our week+ long coverage of VMWorld 2016 starts later today. 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.