Ideal Enterprise Solutions has attained Hewlett Packard's Enterprise Virtual Array (EVA) service delivery partner status, the vendor's highest level of storage accreditation.
The certification process involved an audit of Ideal's services, HP training for its technical personnel and bringing its documentation up to required levels, and included Ideal accompanying HP in several implementations.
This process took about a year. "Initially Ideal looked over HP's shoulder, then HP looked over ours," said Donal Madden, Ideal's business manager for HP storage.
EVA, which is aimed at data centres, is designed to maximise storage use and scalability, and makes use of HP VersaStor virtualisation technology.
Madden said the high-end EVA is complex, so a lot of design consultancy and implementation is needed. "A lot can go wrong," he said.
Ideal has been heavily promoting HP Sans. In May, it followed up its My First San marketing campaign with a complementary First Aid For Server Storage programme.
"We now have the full toolbox," Madden said. "We can now do as much of the reseller's job as they want."
Madden said Ideal will carry out joint marketing with resellers, helping them to define customer requirements and convert leads. "We can manage the process all the way through, giving resellers one butt to kick," he said.
Ideal is also a distributor for other storage vendors, such as EMC and Hitachi Data Systems. Madden said the firm aims to achieve the highest level with everyone. "We want to be seen as more than a warehouse," he said.
Bob Tarzey, service director at analyst Quocirca, said: "This shows Ideal plans to invest further in its contribution to channel expertise for certain HP lines.
"It's good for VARs, which will have access to more resources. What is not clear is how Ideal plans to recoup this investment."
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