It’s always an interesting moment when you pick the name of your partner program and ascribe the tier names, requirements and benefits. Some of the feedback from reseller leadership councils at EMC, F5 Networks and Cisco Systems over the years still resounds in my ears. Namely, that a program name is more for the benefit of the vendor than the partner – and that keeping the tier names simple, easy, obvious is better than over-complicating things. Who in Europe, for example, had a clue where a Venti partner fitted in relative to a Grande in the F5 schema back in the early 2000’s. Only Starbucks drinking locals and even some of them were bemused! Touché!
That’s why, when our marketing team came up with the name SoftIron + Co, it simply clicked with me right away. Yes of course that resonated, because it really sets the tone that SoftIron partners are ‘part of the firm’. An integral part of the mutual success we both aspire to. We’re in the game together, working as a virtual team. My original working name was SoftIron Select, since we’re aspiring to build our VAR channel with a select group of valued, capable, open source partners. The fundamental notion is that we double-down with resellers that see the value of our unique offer and then empower them in exactly the same way that we enable our own sales and technical teams This is extremely important, especially as we get going and set the standard for ourselves. Hence SoftIron + Co.
Whilst interested partners can learn more from our partner’s page, two critical business trends certainly influenced my thinking as I was considering joining the SoftIron team – beyond the fact that the leadership team, company dynamic and international culture was very attractive.
Firstly, that the market is coming our way as open source solutions become increasingly prevalent. The wind is in our sails. Industry pundits predict that by 2024 over 50% of deployed storage will be SDS on-prem or in public clouds. Ceph, Sonic and other open standards are clearly enjoying rapid adoption as users enjoy the benefits they bring to the datacenter.
Secondly, by definition and implication, scale-out technologies embodied in platforms such as HyperDrive and HyperCast drive an annuity revenue stream. Simply stated, this means once a prospect becomes a customer – and are treated well, post-sale – they will make multiple repeat purchases, with the second and third purchases often larger than their initial deployment or proof-of-concept system. The confluence of these two forces makes for a potent business growth opportunity when combined with the range and reach of an elite force of talented VARs around the globe.
At SoftIron, we like to be a little contrarian and a lot audacious. We have some pretty tantalising goals and ambitious channel development plans. If that’s appealing to you as you review your line card, consolidate your storage portfolio or simply desire to get on board with a rapid-growth open source technology vendor, then we should talk. Welcome to SoftIron + Co.
For more information, or to enquire about SoftIron partnership, visit our partner’s page here.
(And, in case you missed it – we’ve just been honored on the CRN Storage 100 List for 2021, in the software-defined segment. Read more about it here)
VP Business Development and Channel