Communications vendor Alcatel-Lucent is looking to help several smaller VARs ramp up mid-market business as part of its plans to strengthen ties with its UK channel.
At the vendor’s recent partner summit in Paris, chief executive Ben Verwaayen highlighted his firm’s strong cash base, despite the Franco-American company’s well-documented financial struggles.
The event was attended by 6,220 people, an increase on 2008, according to UK business development manager Natalie Stallwood. She revealed that the vendor had pinpointed about five SME-focused partners with the potential to move towards higher-end offerings.
“Our priority this year is driving opportunities with our existing channel and becoming more tightly aligned,” she said. “Our strong financial base allows us to take on new partners, but we shall not do so at the expense of our existing resellers.”
Stallwood said Alcatel-Lucent will plough e2.4bn (£2.29bn) into R&D this
year, with a focus on its security division. “We are not a known security
player, but are
working steadily and have done a lot of groundwork to develop that market,” she said.
John Massey, managing director of Alcatel-Lucent VAR Actimax, said that the vendor’s channel managers and pre-sales staff had become far more focused in the past two years.
“Alcatel always had innovative products and the Lucent acquisition has helped that,” he added.
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