Cloud Distribution is launching a cloud services brokerage (CSB) arm which promises to repoint resellers' businesses towards the cloud for a one-off fee of £3,000.
Managing director Scott Dobson (pictured) told CRN that Cloud Distribution's founders had considered launching a CSB before deciding to go down the VAD route instead. Cloud Distribution was founded in 2009.
Some eight years later, Cloud has launched into the CSB market with Your Cloud, which is "powered" by Dutch CSB platform provider Eshgro.
Eshgro's platform is built on HPE's Helion OpenStack offering, as well as infrastructure and applications from other tier-one vendors including Microsoft, Fortinet, Symantec and Veeam.
Partners can use Your Cloud to create a branded platform to develop their own cloud proposition featuring both their existing and new vendor offerings, but Dobson described it as being "at the opposite end of the value scale" from a cloud marketplace.
"This is absolutely not a cloud marketplace in any way, shape or form," he said. "It's enterprise-class infrastructure-as-a-service (IaaS), that a reseller can essentially turn their business around and point it towards the cloud in weeks rather than months and years."
The initial on-boarding for resellers, which covers white-labelling and configuring the dashboard they will use to build their own proposition, will cost £3,000, Dobson said.
"Over and above that, it's micro-payments based on transactions. You are talking about pence rather than pounds," he said.
Cloud Distribution aims to have 40 or 50 partners with propositions built on Your Cloud by the end of 2017, according to Dobson.
"When we looked to start Cloud Distribution, we had two ideas of what it would look like. One was to create what is now called a cloud brokerage platform. So we've been looking at this space for a good few years."
Your Cloud has three key value propositions, he explained.
The first is around IaaS, where Your Cloud is being pitched as a hassle-free alternative to the likes of AWS.
"The second opportunity, where we are getting more traction, is using Your Cloud as a platform to create your own cloud proposition," Dobson said.
"We have one partner, for example, that is looking to offer a private-cloud BlackBerry enterprise services proposition. So rather than having to build all that themselves, they can essentially configure the BlackBerry element within Your Cloud as a per-seat, per-month proposition, and then incorporate that with IaaS and sell it as a turn-key, BlackBerry private cloud proposition. You can apply this to IT resellers, security resellers, voice resellers - anyone who wants to automate and create an as-a-service proposition or automate their existing as-a-service proposition."
The final value proposition is around ISVs looking to migrate their proposition to the cloud, which Dobson claimed Your Cloud enables them to do in a "matter of weeks".
Over 700 predefined applications are available on Your Cloud, and Dobson stressed that there need be no overlap between the solutions partners create in it and Cloud Distribution's vendor portfolio, which includes Check Point, Aerohive and CrowdStrike.
"Clearly, it's very secure and we wouldn't be able to see what they are doing in it," he explained. "Our interest is to sell the core platform itself, and we make our money on the transactions that occur through it."
Founded 10 years ago, Eshgro already has over €7m in recurring revenues going through its platform, according to Dobson.
Cloud Distribution will act as Eshgro's exclusive UK and Ireland distributor, fulfilling an ambition Dobson and his colleagues have harboured for nearly a decade.
"When we looked to start Cloud Distribution, we had two ideas of what it would look like," he explained. "One was to create what is now called a cloud brokerage platform. The other was a traditional VAD. We went down the latter route as the other idea was far more complex to create.
"So we've been looking at the space for a good few years, but we didn't find anything that, firstly, allowed us to create a lot of value for the channel and, secondly, was different and innovative.
"The likes of AppDirect have done a good job of selling an app marketplace concept to telcos and MSPs and Ingram bought a platform called Odin from Parallels to create a market for their resellers to buy their software products as a multiple subscription. But that's not necessarily too hard to do, and the channel can't necessarily differentiate on that, so we were really excited when we were approached by Eshgro."
Dobson rejected comparisons between YourCloud and the cloud marketplaces of the likes of Ingram and Arrow.
"You could look at someone like Pulsant, who have created their own IaaS proposition, and do what [our] core proposition does," he said. "They'd probably be the closest. But that's only an element of what we do; there's nothing remotely like this."
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