Updated Program Elements to Reward Partners Who Invest in Acquiring New Skills and to Help Partners Capitalize on Emerging Market Opportunities
Singapore – November 1, 2010 – Brocade® (Nasdaq: BRCD) today announced that it has optimized the Brocade Alliance Partner Network (APN) to prepare and reward partners who invest in developing knowledge-rich practices to address new technology trends such as virtualization, network convergence and cloud computing. Along with these new updates, Brocade has also introduced a full set of intelligent, customizable tools that enhance the “quality in partnership” to enable the channel to fully maximize its potential as a Brocade business partner.
Earlier this year Brocade introduced Brocade OneTM, the unifying network architecture and strategy that simplifies the complexity of virtualizing applications and enables the migration to a world where information and services are available anywhere in the cloud. To align with this strategy, Brocade has updated the APN program to better support the needs of partners as they help their customers make the transition towards network convergence. Recognizing that this will be a gradual process, Brocade has created program initiatives to reward partners who invest in acquiring the knowledge and skill sets that will help them become trusted advisors to their customers.
To level the playing field and reward partners for acquiring deep networking expertise, Brocade APN partnership levels will be more focused on skills and expertise, rather than strict revenue requirements. Under these new guidelines, partners will be able to increase their level of partnership and receive benefits by achieving certifications and accreditations, as well as by demonstrating convergence-based technology expertise.
To further strengthen the APN program, Brocade is introducing several new initiatives to channel partners, as described below.
Value Incentive Programs
To increase revenue growth, the new Brocade Value Incentive Programs (VIPs) are true pay-for-performance programs that focus on quality in partnership deliverables, such as specializations and a set of measurable objectives, as a way for partners to increase their incentive payouts on a cumulative basis. Open to both distributor and Elite reseller partners, the VIPs are structured to reward and recognize partners who invest in expanding their personnel expertise and skill sets.
Focus on Specializations
Based on standard industry certifications, Brocade Specialized Partner designations help channel partners differentiate themselves in an increasingly competitive marketplace. Earlier this year, Brocade introduced the Network Infrastructure Specialization, which was developed to recognize partners who offer both Brocade Storage Area Network (SAN) and IP/Ethernet products. The latest in this series, the Data Center Infrastructure Specialization rewards partners who possess a broad knowledge base and deep expertise in converged data center network design and protocols. Additional designations, such as the Application Delivery Specialization and the Virtualized Fabrics Specialization, are planned for the early part of 2011. As a key component within the reseller VIP, the progressive nature of the Brocade Specialized Partner designations is intended to logically align with end-customer needs, helping partners establish themselves as experts in strategic technologies.
Partner Enablement Tools
Brocade has also added the following to its existing set of partner enablement tools, which are available via the MyBrocadeTM Web portal:
· APN Mobile Application, which provides anytime, anywhere access to sales tools, program information and updates
· APN Quick Clips, which delivers the latest news and information to partners
· APN Marketing Resource Center, an online site where partners will be able to create customized promotional items, communications vehicles and demand generation campaigns
· APN Global Partner Locator, a customizable, easy-to-use site that helps end customers search for and find partners who offer the products and services they need, which will be available in November 2010 on the Brocade Web site
· APN Product Configuration Tool that allows partners to quickly configure Brocade solutions and efficiently provide quotes to customers, which is planned for availability in early 2011
Modified Allocation for Marketing Development Funds (MDF)
The APN MDF program will transition to a 100 percent marketing fund with a modified accrual rate. This approach provides greater flexibility on what the funds may be applied to, allowing partners to use marketing funds for a broader range of activities, including customer recruitment, sales enablement, promotion, the acquisition of demonstration equipment and certifications. This new MDF program is open to Distributor, Elite and Premier partners on a worldwide basis.
“A vendor that truly understands the multitude of challenges faced by partners on a daily basis is a rare commodity within the market,” said Nigel Lambert, executive vice president at Artemis Technology, a leading IT integrator of enterprise computing solutions. “We need to continually balance investing in staff training while increasing profitability. The implementation of the new Brocade APN program features will help us to grow our expertise in emerging technologies, like convergence and cloud, and will provide us with the framework necessary to be successful in a competitive market.”
“Virtualization and convergence-based technologies are having a profound impact on networking environments within organizations of all sizes and are demanding that networking professionals possess a new set of skills for the design, implementation and management of cloud-optimized networking,” said Barbara Spicek, vice president of Worldwide Channels at Brocade. “Customers are increasingly looking towards their channel partners to provide the guidance and expertise needed to navigate these transitional times. Brocade is fine-tuning the program to augment our partners’ trusted advisor status and maximize their profitability.”
The Brocade APN program includes four distinct partnership levels: Distributor, Elite, Premier and Select. All levels have been designed with specific requirements and benefits to help partners leverage and be rewarded for their networking product knowledge and solution support expertise. For more information on the Brocade APN program, please visit www.brocade.com/apn.
Video – Barbara Spicek, Brocade Vice President of Worldwide Channels, on the updates to the Brocade APN program: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=51VCqAkn4_4
Video – Toby Zellers of TVAR Solutions and Nigel Lambert of Artemis Technology on the Brocade APN Program: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hfiOU84yl44
Brocade® (Nasdaq: BRCD) develops extraordinary networking solutions that enable today’s complex, data-intensive businesses to optimize information connectivity and maximize the business value of their data. For more information, visit www.brocade.com
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Tony Tan / Yip Min-ting
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