CRN recently recognized the who’s who of channel management – leaders who are heading up Partner programs that solution providers depend on to run their businesses. This year CRN profiled Steve Burrows, VP of America Channel Sales, for navigating new business models, technology shifts and making sure Quantum partners succeed. Read on for more information about Steve, his program and his channel goals and advice.

Partner Organization’s Top Three Accomplishments In The Channel Over The Past Year

We created a Managed Services Partner program enabling partners to deliver cloud-based Backup-as-a-service with technology under their own brand. The service is inexpensive – 6 cents per GB to the partner – and combines high performance deduplication technology, on premise backup and cloud replication. We also introduced Lattus Object Storage for archiving. Quantum now offers Lattus Object Storage as a complete archiving solution with three different data mover software options; CommVault Simpana10, Rocket Arkivio and Quantum StorNext Storage Manager. On-boarded over 50 new partners with a focus on big data and media and entertainment solutions.

How Has Partner Community Grown Over The Past Year

We added over 1,000 new reseller accounts to our Quantum Alliance program in 2013 for both data center and big data solutions through marketing outreach activities. We have continued to expand the breadth of partners selling Quantum data center and big data solutions, while serving our top partners in the program. We have expanded our list of Big Data partners, with StorNext being recognized as the de facto standard for managing workflows in media and entertainment, and have continued to show record growth in disk and software.

Single Most Innovative Channel Initiative For Which Your Team Were Responsible

This year our objective has been to help partners rethink their approach to backup and archive. This program including multi-city roadshows educating partners on how to help customers gain control of data growth, reduce the burden on their primary storage and backup infrastructure by implementing backup and archive solutions that align data value with storage costs, over time, to the benefit of their customers. The MSP program, in particular, is innovative in its subscription pricing approach to cloud backup as a service, with enables VARs and MSPs to deliver high performance cloud services on an OPEX (rather than CAPEX) model at a cost far below competitive business and consumer services.

Key Channel/Partner Investments Made Over The Past Year

We put in place additional dedicated marketing and sales resources to grow the business with our top partners. Financial and resource investments to recruit new members and reactivate dormant accounts. Dedicated inside sales team focused on partner training, opportunity development and revenue growth.

How Are You Attracting The Next Generation Of Solution Providers

Quantum is committed to making deals profitable and to being responsive and easy to work with. We offer partners differentiated technology and solutions to address the needs for data center protection and Big Data management, enabling them to expand their customer base. Solutions like Lattus object storage and Scalar LTFS tape offer innovative approaches to archive, The DXi-Series deduplication family provides industry leading disk based backup, vmPRO simplifies backup of virtualized environments, Q-Cloud and the MSP program offer affordable business-class cloud data protection, and StorNext combines high-speed content sharing with cost-effective data archiving.

Advice To Someone Getting Into The Channel Today

Listen to the requirements and needs of the partner community, which includes everyone from the national and regional resellers to distribution and direct marketers. Pick a few initiatives/objectives that you know your partners will value and do them consistently ‘best in class’. Develop a solutions based approach to your portfolio and ensure partners are educated on the problems your solutions solve and how to discover and develop opportunities. Most importantly, be honest and open in all dealings with the partner community – you only reap what you sow.

Bio and Background

With over 20 years of IT sales and marketing experience, Steve has held multiple channel and leadership positions with Quantum for almost 15 of those. The current channel organization includes: the independent channel, distribution, direct marketer sales, inside sales and commodity sales. Steve has also spent time in various marketing roles with EMC, Expersoft and Research Information Systems.

Years With Company: 15
Years Involved With Indirect Sales: 11
Reports To: Sue Nagel, SVP Int’l Sales and Marketing
Does That Person Report to CEO: NO _ 1 position removed
Number Of Employees In Channel Organization: 30
Top Products Sold Through The Channel:

  • DXi De-Duplication Appliances (4XXX, 6XXX, and 8XXX Series) and DXi V-Series virtual deduplication appliance. 
  • Scalar Series Tape Libraries (i40/i80, i500, and i6000 Series)
  • StorNext Software and Appliances o vmPRO Virtual Back-up Appliances and Software
  • Q-Cloud BaaS and DRaaS * Lattus Object Storage Systems
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