Two of Alcatel's largest UK resellers are joining forces to sell the vendor's portfolio of voice and data convergence products.
Reseller Memorex Telex, Alcatel's largest data integrator in the UK, will work with telecoms management reseller Freedom Communications to offer both portfolios to each other's customers. To this end, customers will get fully converged voice and data products and services, without having to deal with two separate VARs.
The two companies have worked with Alcatel to create a business model and brand called Synergy to promote the partnership. The vendor is offering pre- and post-sale technical support, running joint marketing campaigns and making funds available for the venture.
The two resellers are splitting all Synergy deals down the middle and the company that generates the lead will process the contract. Alcatel is also operating a direct-touch unit with all leads passed to the resellers.
Richard Pitt, managing director for enterprise networking at Alcatel, said: "These two companies are our biggest in the market and we have brought them together to work on our convergence contracts."
Alcatel would welcome other reseller joint ventures in the future, he said.
"Customers are actively embracing convergence, but do not want advice from two separate resellers regarding one network," said Pat Botting, managing director of Freedom Communications.
"We knew we had to move with the technology to survive, and to do this we could either acquire technology, employ the skills, or take part in a joint venture like this."
He said the partnership was the best option because Freedom lacked the skills to integrate any acquired technology and did not have any management experience in the data area. Memorex Telex specialises in network and storage integration.
The deal was launched last week, but VARs have already been working with customers. "We expect Synergy's turnover to be about £1m next year," said Botting.
Resellers that do not anticipate the demand for such converged services will become less successful in the future, he added.
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