Architecting P2P relationships: How Microsoft (Platform Provider), Veritas (ISVs) and VSTECS (Solution Aggregator) help define a roadmap for successful partner-to-partner collaborations
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P2P model at-a-glance
Challenge for ISVs
Taking solutions to market at scale
Challenge for Solution Aggregators
Developing and acquiring solutions they can market and sell through their channels
Microsoft’s P2P model
By pairing ISVs and Solution Aggregators, Microsoft’s P2P model enables each to focus on what they do best
For 25 years and counting, Veritas has been working to make data more business-friendly by building solutions that help the world’s largest organizations manage, protect, and identify their data – even in the most complex environments. An Independent software vendor (ISV) based in the US, Veritas designs their extensive suite of information management solutions around the premise that information is more important than infrastructure. Their solutions are built to ensure that customer data is available, visible, and secure.
Veritas offers powerful solutions organized across four categories: backup and recovery, business continuity, storage management, and information governance. Veritas has the product portfolio to offer their customers what they refer to as a “360-Degree Data Management” experience – a cohesive approach that allows customers to manage their data cost-effectively at scale with tools designed to work together.
Developing and improving their powerful and comprehensive suite of solutions is core to the business focus for Veritas. Like most ISVs, Veritas excels at innovating and developing solutions tailored to solve their customers’ biggest business challenges. To maintain this focus, however, Veritas understands the value in developing partnerships with influential system integrators (SIs) and solution aggregators (SAs) in order to go to market.
Microsoft China’s P2P model
Microsoft’s partner ecosystem is populated with a vast variety of partners whose diverse business models create opportunities for cooperation within the community. Within this community, ISVs like Veritas are uniquely positioned to partner with SIs and SAs in order to each leverage the strengths of their respective business models.
ISVs excel at developing innovative solutions – it is the foundation of their success as businesses. However, in devoting their efforts and resources to product development, these partners tend to lack the same channels and paths to market available to larger resellers and solution aggregators. By working with a solution aggregator, ISVs can focus on what they do best – developing great products – and leverage this partnership to take their product to market.
By contrast, solution aggregators have hundreds of different channels they can take to bring products to market, and are generally more in touch with the demands of local markets. Where solution aggregators often don’t develop their own products and solutions – they are far more adept at repackaging developed solutions and taking them to market. ISVs, like Veritas, are ideal partners for solution aggregators as they provide a product that solution aggregators can package and sell to their customers.
In China, Microsoft has worked aggressively to enable and encourage partnerships between ISVs and solution aggregators in an effort to elevate and enable all parties involved. These partnerships allow each to focus on their strengths, while leveraging the complimentary skills of their partner to fill in the natural gaps in their business.
Microsoft provides a common platform between these two types of partners while helping to facilitate their P2P connections. Microsoft provides support by connecting partners with complimentary skills, as well as helping to promote and organize offline events where ISVs can present their solutions to an audience that includes solution aggregators and SMB customers.
While selecting likely partners to participate in this model, Microsoft targets ISVs developing solutions that cater both to the skillsets of the resellers and solution aggregators, as well as to the capabilities of the final (likely SMB) customer. Ideal ISVs for this model have simple, user-friendly solutions that require limited customization. These solutions can be easily packaged by MSPs and solution aggregators who can readily understand the solution and disposition its value for the customer.
Veritas and VSTECS
Veritas’ solutions work across all major cloud platforms – a strategy that enables them to reach the broadest swathe of customers. However, in February of 2017, Veritas and Microsoft announced a strategic technology alliance committing to help enterprise customers migrate to the Azure cloud.
To realize this vision, Microsoft and Veritas needed a solution aggregating partner to help take Veritas’ solutions to market – a partner whose channels to market enabled Veritas and Microsoft to reach the greatest possible number of enterprise customers.
VSTECS, a solution aggregator, is one of the largest distributors in China, possessing national sales coverage and a familiarity with local enterprise customers. In addition to their numerous channels to market, VSTECS was already a disti-level partner in the Veritas channel as well as a Microsoft Azure and Office 365 partner. Their unique familiarity with the suite ofVeritas offerings as well as the Microsoft platform simplified the process by which their sales force could be onboarded and allowed them to seamlessly integrate the offering into their portfolio.
Ultimately, the offering is focused on providing remote protection and back-up for customers by leveraging cost-effective Azure storage. The three companies intend to expand the solution to include remote disaster recovery for mission critical applications with a hybrid cloud resource pool leveraging VMWare, Hyper-V, and Azure.