IBM to create robust channel for services

DQC Bureau
New Update

IBM has of late been taking many steps to drive its partners and scale them

up. Over the last five years, the company has shifted its strategy to be

projected as a services company and now the focus is on ensuring its partners

are able to take advantage of this opportunity. Speaking about IBM's recent

renewed thrust on the channel, Anoop Nambiar, Country Manager-Business Partner

Organization, IBM India/SA said, "The PC business requires a very robust

business channel. But when IBM separated its PC business, it changed its focus

to technology solutions, dealing with Intel servers and unix products. There was

a need to re-look at our partner family, scale partners and make them articulate

so that when they speak to customers they are well-equipped to answer their



In a bid to bridge this gap in skills that IBM wanted in their partners

Nambiar initiated a number of steps to create solution-oriented partners. "We

built a team that would work towards moving partners up the scale. This included

providing certifications such as the KYI (Know Your IBM) program and Earn While

You Learn program," shared Nambiar.

Under services, IBM created a huge team offering a number of packages like

Internet security systems, scalable modular data centers and Express Remote

Managed Infrastructure Services (ERMIS) among others, to cater to mid-market

customers. "Once the offers are ready we have to invest in driving the

initiatives, that is, how are we offering a roadmap to our partners to grow,"

stated Nambiar.

IBM is leading to internal realignment of the team to provide support and

show value for partners. It also saw the launch of a pilot initiative in which

IBM went completely indirect in three cities in India. This was a big step in

showing confidence in its partners, since services have traditionally been a

direct business. "The services are new so we are piloting it in three cities. As

part of this program we are spending time with partners' sales teams. We will

take a backseat and let them front end the projects," said Nambiar. He added

that sometime this month they would launch the third city.