The day had a UK flavour today, with all the respective partners being sent to different briefings depending on their country.
For the UK partners, who seem to have gained a liking for whoopin’ and hollerin’ and cheerin’ just like our US cousins (really?) we were treated to some interesting information about incentives and extra marketing support the vendor is supplying to really help drive its partners businesses and win against the competition.
The likes of VMware, Apple, Google, Oracle, Salesforce.com and Cisco were all in the firing line today as the vendor gets aggressive about its plans to grab market share back
Again there was a sense of gratitude to the channel that really felt genuine and the channel is certainly showing its appreciation judging from the noise!
We were also treated to a great talk from Canadian Gold medallist rower Adam Kreek about the benefits of partnership and working together in a team.
He really was fascinating to listen to and a very amusing guy – I have to say I was worried when he just handed out his gold medal to the audience and told them to ‘pass it around’.
Sadly someone kept hold of it for quite a long time because it never made its way towards us. I just hope he got it back. If anyone is offered a Bejing gold medal for sale - don't buy it!!
He ended the session by getting the whole room to sing the national anthem – I never thought I’d be standing there singing God Save the Queen with the Microsoft UK channel.
Another addition to my list of bizarre things I do in my job!
It has been an interesting four days, packed with product announcements and bold statements. I really don't think I have in my 12 years on CRN, seen that many top level product announcements being made at one event.
What will be really interesting now is to see what actually happens when we get back to the UK and the hype has died down.
Also the one thing that was missing was a more tangible version of the Surface. But I suppose Microsoft felt it had to hold something back.
I think we are in for some interesting times ahead as I really do feel a sleeping giant has started to awake again now and it is certainly hungry for market share and not afraid to shout about it.
Let the battle begin!
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