At its International Partner Conference, Unify, formerly Siemens Enterprise Communications, today announced that it has accelerated efforts to dramatically increase the business it conducts globally through channel partners. At the event, attended by hundreds of channel partners from across Europe and Asia, Unify executives outlined a series of improvements to its partner programs while demonstrating moves already made that evidence Unify’s commitment to a successful channel strategy.
Jon Pritchard, executive vice president of worldwide channels who joined the company earlier this year in the newly created role, outlined the company’s updated business strategy that puts channel success at the top of the priority list. “Let me be clear: we are putting the industry and our competitors on notice that we are absolutely serious about positioning Unify as the partner of choice for the communications and collaboration industry. As we transform to a software-centric company and prepare for the availability of Project Ansible later this year, we need the right partners to help fulfill our growth aspirations,” said Prichard. “Our CEO, Dean Douglas, announced earlier this year that growing revenue through indirect channels is one of our highest priorities and we are not wasting any time to make this a reality. We are 100 percent focused on recruiting and working closely with the best channel partners globally.”
In a move to highlight direct evidence of the strategic priority on a renewed channel focus, the company introduced a number of executive hires, each with deep channel experience. Beginning with CEO Dean Douglas who joined in January, the company has strengthened the leadership team with executives with decades of combined channel experience at IBM and Westcon.
“This is the year that we change the industry view point of Unify and become the first choice for the channel,” said Pritchard. “We are not only strengthening our channel, we are completely reworking our strategy, business model and programs to have a channel-first sales approach. The foundation of a channel business is the product and at Unify, we have an outstanding portfolio that we will continually develop – including an expanded OpenScape Business line and OpenScape Enterprise Express. The incremental opportunity for Project Ansible is huge for the channel and we will work in partnership with our channel to ensure a rewarding sales model.”
In support of its channel strategy, the company announced plans to enhance the Go Forward partner program to make it even more attractive for partners. The program will now offer differentiated partner benefits based on the established accreditation structure, better access to accreditation for new and existing partners, increased marketing support and first class access to Unify support teams to propose, sell and implement solutions.
A partner recruitment drive was also kicked off at the event with a call out for new partners from across all geographies to meet with Unify and sign on. This drive comes as Unify is moving quickly into the SaaS space and getting its channel ready for the launch of Project Ansible in autumn 2014. Project Ansible is a new solution for secure and engaging communications and collaboration that enables companies to deliver a new way to work.
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