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'We have established a VAR Council to assist the channel in finalizing the ExaPartner Program'

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DQC News Bureau
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Jalin Anderson sees India as one of the biggest markets in the APac region. To harness this growth, he is ensuring that Exabyte´s solutions are well positioned in the Indian storage market. His learnings from the expansion and organization of Exabyte’s service, sales and marketing in Japan and APac, will help him in replicate this success in India as well. At his recent visit to Bangalore, he tells DQCI how the company is building value products and placing them strategically, based on the needs of individual countries. 

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How does the Indian storage business compare with markets in other countries?



The Indian storage market has been more focused on stand-alone drives, as compared to other markets that buy tape drives built into automation. However, we now see this shift happening in India as well.

Jalin Anderson



MD, Exabyte, Asia Pacific
There is good scope for India to become a leader in terms of growth and opportunity

We believe that our VXA and LTO automation lineup will be able to provide the best value in the market compared to offerings from other tape vendors in the country. India is a fast-developing market and there is good scope for it to quickly become a leader in terms of growth and opportunity. 

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Asia is one of our largest growth opportunity areas. We are trying to build value products and place them strategically as we develop the needs of these products for individual countries. Currently, Asia contributes over 10% of our worldwide turnover and the Indian marketshare is about 2%. We are looking forward to increase this to a double-digit growth soon.

What target has the company set for revenue and marketshare growth in India. How do you plan to achieve this? 



We plan to increase our growth by increasing the marketshare for VXA and LTO product lines. We are expecting a good growth especially from VXA products, which is the only available technology that covers both, legacy DLT and DAT/DDS markets. This alone represents majority of the Indian storage market. 

What channel programs do you have in place for your partners in India? 



Exabyte has always followed a channel-centric sales model. We understand that different partners need different kind of help and guidance. Some want a collaborative approach and others want a more co-operative program. We work together closely to assess customer needs and match them with the technology infrastructure. 

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For partners who want a co-operative program, we offer focused marketing activities, specific to each partner’s marketplace. These initiatives allow us to move products in the market exclusively through distributors, resellers and OEM partners.

There must be some tangible benefits that your programs offer to the channel. What are these?



All our channel programs are flexible and offer partners a choice on how they would like do business with us. We, in turn, are dedicated to delivering marketing support, training, education, certification, technical support, web access and rewards for the channel. This encourages our partners to consistently deliver and have a customer-focused approach. 

The purpose of our partner program is to build stronger relationships with VARs and to establish a direct line of communication with the reseller community. We provide them with products, pricing discounts, technical and sales support.

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This helps resellers to upgrade a customer’s data backup systems to the superior capacity, speed, restore integrity and automation support of VXA-2 technology. At the same time, it allows them to make a healthy margin. 

We have also established a VAR Council to assist the channel in finalizing the ExaPartner Program including setting program benefits, focus and communication methods. The council is made up of VARs from different verticals and regions.

What products are you offering in the Indian market? 



Our latest product line consists of two technologies–VXA and LTO. Our entire range of products are available in the Indian market. However, though the VXA technology was launched two years, it has entered the Indian market recently. We are bullish about VXA-2, which is the high-performance and low-priced storage solution. The DDX technology, on the other hand, is on its way out.

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Which segments are you targeting with your new releases? 



The mid-range and high-end enterprise is what we are looking at as a favorable market for these products. We can confidently say that this range represents the most reliable tape technologies. These technologies have been approved by the government test body in India, independent test labs globally and our customers. This proves our reliability and success. 

What is Exabyte´s product roadmap?



In the coming days, Exabyte will focus on two primary markets –the high-density 8mm and LTO automation market as well as the DDS replacement segment. However, the published VXA roadmap currently extends through four successive generations, consistently increasing capacity and speed, while balancing the pricing level. 

This protects the user’s long-term investments in drives and media. It also ensures that VXA will continue to meet needs of end-users for years to come. 

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The various changes of the guard in backup and restore technology creates a significant business opportunity for resellers.

Also, we ensure that partners get everything they need to take care of their customer’s storage requirements. It helps in giving the buyer value for their IT investments and helps the channel make profits in the process. This makes VXA-2 implementations a win-win for both, resellers as well as their customers.

Are there any plans to expand your operations in India?



Exabyte is a channel-focused corporation. We depend upon our partners to provide sales, service and support to the customer. We want to capitalize on this and will continue to develop the channel. This, in turn, will help us to further our business grows. Once this is done, we will think of expanding our operations as we will then have have the support of our partners. 

SUNILA PAUL

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