IBM is set to become the latest vendor to reward resellers for specialist datacentre skills as it attempts to cash in on the managed services boom.
Mimicking recent moves from HP and Cisco, Big Blue was close to unveiling a new datacentre accreditation as its Business Partner Leadership Conference (BPLC) kicked off in Los Angeles last week.
Logicalis and Xploite are thought to be among the first wave of UK partners that will be accepted onto the programme.
Ian Smith, chief executive of Xploite, said the accreditation would focus on the mid-market.
“We have put ourselves forward for this,” he confirmed.
“When we started our managed services rollup a year ago we aimed it at the mid-market. It turns out we were bang on. The mid-market is accelerating rapidly towards the outsourcing model.”
Tom Kelly, UK managing director of Logicalis, confirmed the integrator was keen to be involved.
“This is a reaction to business demand. IBM is trying to take it beyond the brand, so it will not be just about system i or system x,” he added.
However, some partners were more sceptical of IBM’s motives.
Nick King, chief executive of IBM Business Partner Apex, said: “IBM has seen its market share erode because of resellers competing in the datacentre space. It recognises that resellers are increasingly targeting high-value, repeatable services business. This is a way to control that.”
King added that the new certification was designed to mirror recent moves from other large system vendors.
Some 2,000 partners were expected to attend the BPLC last week. The invitation-only event replaces IBM’s PartnerWorld, which pulled in around 5,000 attendees last year.
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