The creation of the site follows VIP officially going live as an Authorised Microsoft OEM Distributor in January. Last October, CRN revealed that the software giant had added six distributors to its Authorised list – VIP made the grade along with Blue Solutions, Computers Unlimited (CU), Micro Peripherals, Northamber and Westcoast.
Speaking to CRN, VIP product manager Alan Patterson, said: “Microsoft has 10 distributors in total so anything we can do to differentiate ourselves has to be a good thing.”
According to the distributor, its ‘Accelerate with Microsoft’ site identifies the business opportunities that are offered by Microsoft’s latest OEM software products: Windows Vista, Office 2007 and Windows Small Business Server products.
“The web site is the ideal resource for VARs that want to know how they can maximise the potential of Vista, Office 2007 and Small Business Server,” Patterson added. “It also helps to explain how resellers can benefit from signing up to the Microsoft Club.”
Although Microsoft’s own web site has a lot of information on it, Patterson said it was “a bit of a minefield” and “could take a reseller a long time to trawl through it”.
Microsoft UK OEM group manager Robert Epstein, told CRN: “Some of our distributors have been on board for some time so they already have microsites up and running. However, VIP is a new distributor and is the first to develop such a comprehensive microsite. I’m sure the new site will help resellers sell more.”
Richard Love, marketing director at CU, said: “It is a good idea to have a separate Microsoft site due to the sheer breadth of Microsoft products. We have updated our private partner site, Reseller Zone, to include Microsoft information. Our remit from Microsoft when we came on board was to focus on the Apple software market place. This means that we have a less complex task than other distributors because it is a smaller portfolio of products on which to concentrate.
“Not many people realise what a huge Apple developer Microsoft is. It actually has the largest Apple development team outside of Apple itself. We are looking forward to the new version of Office for Apple in the summer.”
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