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The haze is clearing - things are looking bright for the channel and cloud


13 November 2017:

Chris Wright - 
Cloud Business
Development Manager 

The channel and its relationships are key to the take up of cloud services, Christopher Wright, Cloud Business Development Manager, Azlan, UK, explores the role of the channel in extending the reach of cloud providers.

When it comes to cloud and the role of the channel, the picture can seem hazy. While some see obstacles and challenges, others see a plethora of opportunities. The truth, as often is the case, lies somewhere in between.

According to Canalys, the cloud infrastructure services market maintained strong momentum in Q2 2017, growing 47% year on year to reach US$14 billion . Growth was driven by demand for primary cloud infrastructure services, such as on-demand computing and storage, across all customer segments and industries. Amazon Web Services (AWS) maintained its dominance growing 42% on an annual basis and accounting for more than 30% of total spend. However, both Microsoft and Google saw rapid year-on-year growth rates of 97% and 92% respectively and IBM enjoyed double-digit growth of 23%.

The cloud opportunity
As the four largest cloud providers compete for enterprise market share and seek to expand their reach further into the mid market, it is the channel they are turning to. The channel, with its established customer relationships, is integral in the expansion plans of these cloud providers and this can be seen by the revamping of their partner programmes to appeal to new partners.

Channel partners are a critical sales and support network for mid size enterprises, where conversations are less about technology implementations and more about how the organisation can benefit from the IT investment. Moving to the cloud may deliver greater productivity and lower costs but it doesn’t remove the requirement to adapt technology to solve business needs.

The mapping of technology capability to business objectives requires in-depth understanding of the customer’s needs married with solution expertise. Channel partners that continue to deliver insight and maintain a trusted partner relationship will remain an important component for success.

Identifying the challenges
Without question, cloud has changed the way IT infrastructure is procured and utilised. As more organisations seek to capitalise on the benefits of using cloud in their operations, channel partners that only sell, support and maintain hardware infrastructure will increasingly come under threat, not only from the global public cloud providers but also from smaller, regionalised cloud service providers.
There are steps that organisations can take to evolve their service offering and continue to remain relevant to customers. Supported by distribution and in partnership with cloud providers, channel partners can use cloud services to change their business model, approach and value add offering.

Redefine your services with a little help from Azlan
Azlan has the knowledge and expertise coupled with tried and tested methods to address challenges and put partners back in the driving seat. We offer a vibrant eco system of in-house capabilities, best-in-class technology and partnerships with market-leading innovators to assist channel partners in building a comprehensive cloud services practice.

The StreamOne Cloud Marketplace offers a platform of cloud products and services with a comprehensive management tool that makes it simple and transparent for partners to manage their cloud services. Partners have the opportunity to offer their own branded cloud storefront and upload their own cloud services whilst supported by the expertise of the Azlan cloud team. Our experienced technical pre- and post- sales engineers are available to assist partners on their transitional journey from traditional product supplier to cloud service provider, plugging any knowledge and skills gaps along the way.

Evolution not revolution
The cloud might be a game-changer for organisations in terms of flexibility and cost savings, but the fundamentals of sound business planning seldom alter. Rarely, do organisations have the time, resources and expertise to make all of their business decisions without consulting outside experts.

Relationships hold the key for those organisations keen to adapt, embrace change and evolve their service offering in line with their customers’ needs. Azlan’s cloud services and solutions can ease the transition, fill in any knowledge gaps and make the transition to the cloud a smooth experience for channel partners and their customers.

To find out more, contact your Azlan cloud solutions expert or visit
http://www.as.techdata.eu/uk/products_and_solutions/cloud_solutions/


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