Intelisys, ScanSource Forge Channel Cloud Initiative


The momentum toward cloud computing has generated a new alliance between two key distribution players that plan to combine efforts to help foster business transformation and the ultimate success of their partner base, CRN has learned.

Through a strategic partnership set to be announced early next week, Intelisys, a Petaluma, Calif.-based technology services distributor, will collaborate with ScanSource, a Greenville, S.C.-based value-added distributor, to help channel partners engage the suppliers and resources necessary to successfully leverage a services-based business model.

The alliance enables the ScanSource solution provider community to more easily connect with Intelisys' network of cloud and carrier service providers, as well as allows them to access channel enablement programs that can further support the business transformation decisions and processes necessary to build successful cloud-based delivery models.

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"We've been talking about enabling the ScanSource reseller community to sell cloud and carrier services for quite some time," said Andrew Pryfogle, senior vice president of cloud services at Intelisys. "ScanSource saw this as a faster path to market for them. We come to the table with a very large portfolio of fully vetted cloud and carrier service providers that their partner community can now access. ScanSource will help to broker relationships between their partners and us, and we are coming alongside with our channel managers, marketing support and education components to help those resellers make that pivot."

Among those education components is the Intelisys Cloud Services University, which provides a variety of virtual and in-person training tracks that focus on effective sales practices to support cloud offerings. The company also offers a Channel Alignment Program intended to help with matchmaking between IT solution providers and telecom agents that might combine efforts toward more complete customer solutions.

"VARs and agents have been eating from opposite sides the same apple around the cloud for some time now, and these worlds are starting to come together more rapidly," observed Pryfogle. "Everything we do is about supporting our sales partners. We have six channel managers around the country, supported by about 30 partner support reps in Petaluma, Calif., which helps them with aspects around pricing, quotes, escalation, and helping them to figure out which suppliers best match the circumstances of the deal."

For ScanSource, the alliance represents the opportunity to solve time-to-market issues in bringing cloud-related support to their partners.

"We felt the need to do something quickly," said Brian Cuppett, vice president of merchandising at ScanSource. "We are trying to bring solutions to our partners to help them build and expand their business, so it made sense to look at Intelisys because of their position in areas where we have not been participating."

The alliance solves an immediate problem for Robby Turner, executive vice president at Data Projections, a Houston-based ScanSource partner that has been looking to ramp up cloud and managed service offerings.

"We've been grappling with whether to build, buy or partner," Turner told CRN. "It's all about time-to-market and capital. We're already in the process of building our infrastructure to offer these types of services, but right now we don't have the organizational background to do the marketing and sales. This will help us to grow quickly, and will help us make sure we're doing it the right way."

Partners interested in leveraging the alliance are advised to contact their business development representatives at ScanSource for further information.

PUBLISHED JUNE 6, 2013