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Brocade courts Cisco partners as network channel takes shape

Alex Scroxton

After signing managed services provider Calyx as the first UK Elite partner in its revamped channel programme, Brocade has revealed that a number of disgruntled Cisco partners have been knocking at its doors in recent weeks.

Speaking to MicroScope, Brocade EMEA channel sales director Amanda Giddins said increasing competition in the Cisco market was beginning to prove too much for some.

"Cisco favours its Gold Partners, and it gets to a point where there are so many Cisco partners in a bid that it comes down to a price war," she said.

She added: "Calyx was an existing Foundry partner as well as a Cisco partner, and this is very much about how we can work with existing partners to make them more data centre oriented. Calyx is strong in IT and managed services and is interested in moving into SANs as well."

The Elite level is the highest of four possible Brocade channel accreditations, but resellers across all tiers of the programme benefit from sales, marketing and technical support, plus deal protection that extends across its Technology Alliance Partner Programme.

This means that Brocade partners can add kit from other vendors, such as IBM or EMC into their deals and receive the same levels of protection, while IBM dealers can do the same in reverse.

Giddins added that after having given existing Brocade distributor Avnet access to the Foundry portfolio earlier in the summer, there were currently no plans to recruit further distributors and said she was "more focused on SIs right now".

Brocade also added Magirus on the continent, but this relationship will not be coming to the UK.


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