Novell will cut 15 of its 45 top-tier systemhouse dealers after the first phase of Partnernet, its reauthorisation programme for the reseller channel, was carried out on Monday.
Several of the existing 45 systemhouses failed to qualify for platinum status, the top tier in the new programme. Novell refused to name them but said 'fewer than 10' did not qualify and three or four systemhouses, including Wakebourne, did not bother applying for platinum accreditation because of revenue pressures.
The final number of platinum resellers is expected to be between 30 and 45 as borderline cases have been given another chance to qualify by the end of September. Dealers that have made it through the first round still have to appear before a Novell board before their platinum accreditation is confirmed in November.
A panel of Novell staff spent the past two weeks assessing companies' application forms, including David Hillman, southern region sales manager for Novell. He said: 'The revenue pressure is too high for some so I think the numbers will probably drop, particularly as we have had stiffer criteria.'
Hillman said Novell's middle tier accreditation, gold, has helped dealers that did not qualify as platinum.
Novell has moved from a two-tier to three-tier dealer accreditation to help differentiate partners as platinum, gold and authorised, which replace systemhouse and authorised accreditation (PC Dealer, 8 May).
In addition, the networking software vendor has revamped its licensing programme, cutting the entry level for Novell's networking volume licensing agreement from $30,000 to $15,000. The networking entry level for its corporate licensing agreement fell from $600,000 to $250,000. Special programmes are being introduced for the public and education sectors.
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