Email archiving vendor Mimecast is on the hunt for partners to help it tap into the growing demand for Microsoft Exchange upgrades.
Speaking to ChannelWeb at the Microsoft Worldwide Partner Conference in Los Angeles, Mimecast's chief executive Peter Bauer said end users need to start preparing to move off the Exchange 2003 platform.
"The time for [Exchange 2003] has run out and with the economic situation for many companies slowly improving, IT funds have returned and there is a huge opportunity for the channel to help companies make the move onto Exchange 2010," he explained.
However, to make the most of this opportunity, Bauer said the firm will need to take on more channel partners.
"To put it in perspective, there are about 200 million seats still to move up to Exchange 2010 and if all our existing partners were focused on that 24 hours a day, seven days a week, it would take them about a decade to get that job done," he explained.
As a result, Julian Martin, vice president of business development at Mimecast, said the firm is "selectively" scouring the Microsoft channel for partners.
"We are after people who are complementary to our existing channel and we are not looking to over-recruit or overlap with the partners we already have," he said.
"It is very much geared around the Microsoft community, so [we want] partners that are interested in adding value and augmenting the work Microsoft is already doing around Office 365 and Exchange 2010."
As well as partner recruitment, the firm is trying give end users incentives to ditch Exchange 2003 by providing access to free migration services.
Through the deal, the firm's channel partners will provide end users with free-of-charge support when migrating to Exchange 2010 or Office 365.
End users will need to undergo their chosen migration within six months of taking the vendor up on its offer.
Martin said the deal is good news for partners, as it will save end users money, which they might spend on other areas of IT.
"From a partner perspective, we are giving them the ability to use our technology to move [onto Exchange 2010 or Office 365] and then go back to their customers and tell them about the other services we provide," he added.
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