Channel Marker

July 14, 2008  4:14 PM

Quite a useful tool for short-circuiting information overload, if you’re willing to pay for it

Heather Clancy Heather Clancy Profile: Heather Clancy

I’ve been pretty vocal in the past about the need for an application or system that helps solution providers consolidate all the different information feeds they receive (or could receive) from their preferred vendor partners. Well, such an animal exists in the form of a SaaS application from Neuron Global, and I got a demo last week from founder and vice president of marketing Colin Kennedy.

The company, based in Washington, D.C., bills itself a provider of sales and event insight that helps synergize the salient points of incoming communications and report them out to your sales team in a consistent manner (according to the parameters and filters that your team picks). Continued »

July 11, 2008  5:15 PM

CDW: IT spending plans relatively stable

Heather Clancy Heather Clancy Profile: Heather Clancy

Hello kids, time for the latest round of spending data from national computer products reseller CDW! With the stock market bouncing all over the place, how comfortable REALLY are businesses about spending on information technology?

Certainly there is no cause for great celebration … or depths of despair, according to the latest CDW survey. The bimonthly CDW IT Monitor was relatively stable for the end of June, compared with the end of April. For June, the IT Monitor index was 73, up one point from April and unchanged from February. Continued »

July 10, 2008  6:32 PM

Cisco worldwide channel chief: Partners are about more than fulfillment

rivkalittle Rivka Little Profile: rivkalittle

Cisco senior vice president of worldwide channels Keith Goodwin gave a mini state-of-the-channel address during a web conference with Wall Street analysts Wednesday. Goodwin painted a picture of an evolving channel that is based more on selling integrated technology and services than on pushing volume.

“We have moved away from rewarding partners based on volume” to offering incentives “based on their investment in Cisco technologies and their ability to deliver value beyond fulfillment,” said Goodwin. Continued »

July 10, 2008  9:16 AM

Another Microsoft exec, another hosted ERP story

Bcournoyer Brendan Cournoyer Profile: Bcournoyer

HOUSTON — Microsoft executives aren’t exactly toeing the company line when it comes to vendor-hosted ERP. In fact, the more people that talk, the more it’s becoming evident that there may not even be a company line.

Yesterday here at the Microsoft Worldwide Partner Conference, senior news editor Barb Darrow and I met with Microsoft Dynamics execs Doug Kennedy and Chris Caren. When we asked if Microsoft will offer a hosted version of its ERP software, Caren said:

“The significant portion of customers want hosted ERP. What we’re not convinced of is the business model.”

Continued »

July 9, 2008  10:36 PM

Microsoft roadmap tidbits from WPC

badarrow Barbara Darrow Profile: badarrow

Microsoft execs talked some roadmap stuff at the Microsoft Worldwide Partner Conference.

SQL Server 2008 continues its dance with destiny. On Wednesday, Microsoft corporate vice president Bob Kelly, said the much-delayed database will be on the August price list. And, hr pointed out helpfully, there will be no price hikes “unlike Oracle.”  

Small quibble: The fact that the new database is on the price list is no guarantee it will actually be available in August. That price list statement “lets customers and partners know that Microsoft expects to meet its deadline to deliver a new release within the Q3 timeframe,” a spokesman said via email.

Given that some corporate accounts were told (by Microsoft) that they’d get their final code last week, this is puzzling. Oh well.

CEO Steve Ballmer said the next Office Communications Server is due “later this year.” But that gets into the whole ‘did he mean calendar year or fiscal year?’ debate. Any guesses?

Also: Hyper-V hit Windows Assurance this week; SBS 2008 and Windows Essential Business Server are promised for GA November 12; System Center Virtual Machine Manager 2008 and Microsoft Application Virtualization betas are now available; and the next release of Windows HPC 2008 is on for the fall.

July 9, 2008  11:51 AM

Microsoft security partners get bonuses for selling identity products

Bcournoyer Brendan Cournoyer Profile: Bcournoyer

Lost among the hoopla over Microsoft’s Vista and Software as a Service news yesterday were some pretty big channel enhancements for security partners.

The back story to the news is that, for the past year, Microsoft has been combining its security and identity business groups into one new department, the aptly named Security and Identity Business Group. Now that most of the logistics are in place, Microsoft is adding new incentives for partners who sell security and identity products together.

Continued »

July 8, 2008  12:44 PM

VMware CEO Diane Greene suddenly replaced

rivkalittle Rivka Little Profile: rivkalittle

VMware CEO Diane Greene — who is widely credited with driving server virtualization into the mainstream — was suddenly replaced by Microsoft veteran Paul Maritz. Maritz had most recently been running the cloud computing division at VMware parent company EMC.

The industry-shaking announcement came in a statement from the board of directors, but the company didn’t offer any details about why Greene is leaving. VMware chairman Joe Tucci thanked Greene for her contribution and wished her the best.

Continued »

July 8, 2008  11:22 AM

Microsoft Online Services by the numbers

Bcournoyer Brendan Cournoyer Profile: Bcournoyer

HOUSTON — Stephen Elop, president of the Microsoft business division, spoke this morning about the partner compensation plan for Microsoft Online Services. We’ve already covered the news, but here are some interesting figures Elop threw out during his keynote address:

  • 96: Percentage of Microsoft’s revenue that comes through partners
  • 7: Dollars in services revenue that partners generate for every $1 of Microsoft revenue they generate
  • 5.4 billion: Dollars in SharePoint services revenue that Microsoft expects partners to make this year
  • 27: Points of margin that the average Microsoft partner makes by selling collaboration and enterprise search services
  • 20: Points of margin that the average Microsoft partner makes by selling unified communications and other emerging technologies
  • 500: Customers that have already subscribed to Dynamics CRM Online since its April launch
  • 200: Partners that have sold and deployed Dynamics CRM Online

July 8, 2008  10:39 AM

Microsoft confirms ‘Mac vs. PC’ counterattack

Bcournoyer Brendan Cournoyer Profile: Bcournoyer

HOUSTON — Microsoft is indeed planning an all out blitz against Apple’s “Mac vs. PC” ads that have relentlessly attacked Windows Vista and significantly damaged its reputation among potential customers.

During this morning’s keynote address at the Worldwide Partner Conference, Windows corporate vice president Brad Brooks alluded to the rumors of a $300 million ad campaign and said, “They’re true.” He said today’s full-page ads in USA Today and The Wall Street Journal, along with the Windows Vista Small Business Assurance news, were just “the first few drops.”

“The big wave is coming,” he continued. “You thought the sleeping giant was still sleeping? Well, we’ve woken up.”

More news on Brooks’ keynote and partner reaction will be up later on

July 7, 2008  8:08 PM

Microsoft working on hosted ERP software

Bcournoyer Brendan Cournoyer Profile: Bcournoyer

A Microsoft-hosted enterprise resource planning (ERP) offering is appearing more and more likely.

That’s according to Marie Huwe, Microsoft’s general manager for partner marketing strategy. Today at the Microsoft Worldwide Partner Conference here in Houston, senior news editor Barb Darrow and I asked her where ERP fits into the Microsoft Online Services plans. Continued »

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