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Brocade channel surge nets Cisco partners

Alex Scroxton

SAN specialist Kavanagh is to scale back its Ciscorelationship after signing up to Brocade's Alliance Partner Network as a Premier Partner.

Kavanagh originally signed on to push Cisco's MDS(Multi-layer Data Switch) SAN line-up to develop its datacentre proposition.

However, citing difficulties in obtaining competitive pricing for enterprise deals given Cisco's preference for pushing good deals through its Gold Partners, it will now be concentrating on Brocade.

Kavanagh technology and alliances director Anthony Head said the reseller would still carry Cisco but added that the two year relationship had not been as fruitful as hoped.

"We engage with enterprise customers and we struggle to compete on price with the Cisco Gold Partner advantage," he said.

"We are opening our business up to embrace alternatives where we can make some money, and the marriage between Brocade's SAN products and Foundry's IP products does this," he continued.

"Before buying Foundry their relationships were by proxy through storage vendors but they are now taking that opportunity to get closer to the channel."

One Cisco partner who declined to be named said he could understand why Cisco was trying to cement its channel during the recession,saying: "Cisco is looking at volumes and must support the big guys if they want to keep that going."

However, he continued: "By taking services revenues away and allowing larger partners to squeeze you out it makes you question if you should bother, sometimes."

Kavanagh's new partnership will also build on the close ties between Brocade and Hewlett-Packard, and the reseller's own lengthy relationship with HP'sEnterprise Servers and Storage (ESS) unit, as well as its ProCurve switching business, according to Head.


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