Brocade has slammed its rivals for promoting vendor lock-in, claiming that resellers risk losing their credibility if they do not sell best-in-class solutions.
Speaking at its Partner Summit event in Prague, the vendor's head of global channels Regan McGrath claimed one of his firm's unique offerings to the channel is its open architecture, and urged its 90-strong army of VARs present at the event to stand up to vendors.
McGrath (pictured) claimed that too many resellers are bidding for the same vendor deals, and can only differentiate themselves on price, meaning margins are cut and resellers are unable to offer any additional value.
Speaking to partners at the event, he said: "Let's just stop for a second. What do you guys do for a living? You are value-added integrators – that is what you do. The reason you existed in the first place was to take best-in-class products, bundle them into solutions that the vendors were not [offering] and then provide the best solution possible for your customers.
"Yet every vendor out there is forcing you to do exactly the opposite thing. They're saying ‘buy everything in this rack – it's all one colour and one company'. And you wonder why you're not making any margin? No kidding! You are selling exactly the same thing as the guy beside you is selling. Wake up.
"You should not have 15 or 12 or seven different people bidding on the same transaction. We do not have the encumbrance of being that big vendor – it's a challenge for those guys; I feel for them. They are running into problems due to the size of their companies, but we are not there yet.
"The number one reason why [customers] make a decision on Brocade is that they like our open, best-in-class philosophy. We don't have the full stack: we don't sell servers, we don't sell security software. We sell networking, full stop. We say to customers: ‘buy best-in-class products'.
"We have a perfect value proposition for partners because we are telling you to remember your roots. Don't let these big vendors force you into this homogenous solution – it is nonsense. There are some customers who want that, fine. But, move on, you're not going to make any money selling homogenous stacks.
"Get the best server, the best hardware, build the best security and sell the best networking which we hope will be Brocade."
McGrath added that customers are happy that his firm's products mean they do not have to rip and replace infrastructure like they do with some of its rivals.
He added: "The incumbent is usually saying to rip and replace the whole thing. We have a different philosophy and I suggest you have a different philosophy too if you want to differentiate yourself in the market. You lose all your credibility if you do not [offer the best products to customers]."
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