Griffin hopes its acquisition by fellow managed networks provider MDNX will give its data partners the kick needed to move into selling Ethernet and big networks.
Formed through the merger of three VARs in 2010, MDNX has a £20m channel business but also sells direct to large enterprises and the public sector. Its acquisition of channel-only outfit Griffin will double the size of its channel to £40m.
Griffin managing director Andrew Dickinson – who will lead the combined channel business – said his firm's focus on broadband gels with MDNX's efforts on the Ethernet side.
"We have made a big investment in automation, portals and online ordering and provisioning," he told ChannelWeb. "MDNX has made a similar investment but has invested in slightly differing things so our capabilities for partners will be enhanced.
"The big opportunity in the channel now is to get into more powerful connectivity and the data channel is lagging behind. We are hoping that, as a combined group, we can make more of a dent into data VARs and get more to use our quoting tool to start selling Ethernet."
MDNX has about 170 active partners to Griffin's 450 and chief executive Mark Thompson admitted that Griffin has a more established channel brand.
"I have a firm belief in the channel and it is a very exciting part of the market," he said. "For some time I have been looking to add more scale and capacity in that market to service firms in the channel."
Thompson said MDNX had been talking to Griffin for nearly two years and would not rule out further acquisitions.
Griffin partners used to working with a channel-only provider would see no difference under the new arrangement, he argued.
"The only thing we address directly is large enterprise and that is typically not a market that engages any conflict with the channel," he said.
MDNX operates six datacentres, potentially handing Griffin partners cost savings when offering services such as co-location, Dickinson said.
"It also gives us more gravitas with end-user companies. They want to know the organisation that sits behind the channel partner is scalable," he added.
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