Opinion

Who else thinks resellers can thrive in the cloud era?

I'm a bit confused by the Channel Transformation Alliance, the body which has been set up to promote and further the spread of cloud computing and managed services in the channel. 

It's not that I don't think it's a good idea. After all, who could argue with its aims of promoting education around cloud, managed services and emerging technologies based on the belief that the channel will be operating more heavily in those areas in the future. Not me.

I'm also broadly in agreement with Jason Beal, Ingram Micro EMEA senior director for services and cloud computing, that the reseller channel should remain the primary route to market and that resellers will "thrive in the era of cloud computing and IT-as-a-Service".

The list of members of the alliance appears pretty impressive on first viewing, with the likes of Microsoft, HP, Symantec, CA Technologies, Kingston, APC and SNIA Europe. But I can't help thinking that as we're talking about a Channel Transformation Alliance there ought to be quite a few more vendors and distributors on that list. After all, what reason would any vendor selling through resellers (or distributor supplying them) have for not joining?

So I'm left wondering if more companies are going to join the alliance over time. I hope so, otherwise I'd have to conclude that the current members are the only people in the IT industry who truly believe resellers will "thrive in the era of cloud computing and IT-as-a-Service". I hope more companies join. And soon.

This was first published in September 2011

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