Storage giant EMC is hoping to take a major chunk of the SME storage market by realigning its business and bolstering its channel sales.
The vendor, which in the past has been mostly known for focusing on the high end, is looking to increase its share of the SME market from two or three per cent to 30 per cent "quickly", according to the firm.
Adrian McDonald, general manager at EMC UK, said the vendor will ramp up its indirect strategy to do this. "Now we put 55 per cent through the channel, but we want this to be 70 per cent in the next 18 months," he said.
Nick Laurence, marketing manager at Bi-Tech, said: "There is more need for SMEs to have proper storage strategies. EMC has realised there is a mass market in this area, so it is using the channel to hit the sector."
McDonald said the firm has already hired an in-house SME sales team to support its channel and is looking to sign more resellers to its Velocity partner programme. EMC in the US recently signed Tech Data as a distributor, and McDonald did not rule out such a move happening in the UK.
"Ideal will play a key role in our distribution strategy, but I can see this expanding. We are in discussions with some major specialist distributors and will also look at some others," he said.
McDonald added that the expansion is part of a new strategy, which later this month will see EMC add a low-end product to its range, code-named Piranha.
But McDonald denied there will be any conflict in the low end of the market between one of its largest partners, Dell, and the channel. "Resellers come across Dell anyway, and they have been doing very well," he said.
Justin Harling, managing director of Velocity partner CAE Technology Services, said services are the best weapon to fight off Dell. "Storage is critical to business; even low-end products need to have services wrapped around them. This is where the channel comes in," he said.
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