Every once in awhile you talk to a VAR who’s really excited about a vendor, its products and its partner program. I know, shocker, right!?
Lately Nexsan’s hit the radar screen in this respect. Nexsan is seeing phenomenal success recruiting new VARs (including Sun storage partners) for its Assureon archiving appliances. Perhaps more important, it seems to be keeping existing VARs happy and profitable.
For one thing, the margins are solid. Generally, a storage VAR hopes for 20% margin on product sales: Nexsan ups the ante to 30%. Then there’s an aggressive SPIFF program for sales reps and sales engineers, said one source close to the company
Above and beyond margin, basically, for every $25,000 worth of product sold, there’s $1,000 spiff for the sales rep and $500 for the sales engineer.
Gould likes the technology and the energy efficiency of the line. “In terms of density and green-ness it’s great for many customers who don’t have a lot of power left in their data centers but who still need more storage.” Assureon packs 84 terabytes onto a four-U rack, he said.
He also said the partner program is well thought out and executed. “They have one of the better deal registration programs in the business. It works the way it’s supposed to–I think we’ve had one conflict in six years.”
Scott Mellegaard is another true believer. “They treat their partners really well. We had one conflict over the years where two partners registered the deal. Nexsan completely freaked out and wrote us a check to cover the difference between our quote for the customer and what the cost would be and we got an apology from the president,: said Mellegaard, data center specialist for 3rpco, a Scottsdale, Arizona, ERP specialist.
Assureon competes very well with EMC’s Centera line, several VARs said. “This will be a great elephant hunting season in IT…with only four or five Nexsan VARsper market, we can go out there, and replace those boxes,” Mellegaard said.
In his view, a 56-terabyte Assureon box and Centera are dollar-for-dollar equal but installation with Assureon takes a day and a half vs. 30 days for EMC.
That’s because Nexsan does a ton of custom preconfiguration so the Assureon appliances arrive pretty much ready to roll.
“It’s all baked and done. The hardest thing about Assureon is knowing what you’re policies will be, how long do you hold this type of data vs. that type of data? Theses IT guys often have no idea. You’re not training them on assembling the product, you’re talking to them about wht they want their policies to be,” Mellegaard said.
Once the VAR gets the PO, he goes to the business owner and runs through a series of scenarios. “Do you want this [type of data] encrypted or not? Do you want it held for 30, 90, days or one year, ten years? Do you want to save every version or the last two versions? How do you want to ingest the data?”
Once the box is ready, the VAR sends the intended IP addresses to the factory, and the checklist of policies is loaded. Then the quick on-site install.
Robert Niemeyer, director of business development at Epoch Concepts, a Lone Tree, Colo. government integrator is a convert.
Nexsan can be a strategic vendor for companies wanting to reduce their storage costs, he said. “It helps lead a conversation about minimizing some of the expense and complexity of storage. Assureon does a great job archiving data and, in doing that, it doesn’t ‘get rid’ of EMC but is an inexpensive way to allow customers to buy less EMC,” Niemeyer said.
Assureon offers partners a livable margin, is a solid product inexpensively priced and targets unstructured data, which is a hot part of the market,” he noted.
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