The Microsoft partner community can expect increased investment in industrial clouds and technical training over the coming year.
Microsoft’s 2022 fiscal year, which began in July, will appear to be “another year of significant investment” for the vendor’s team of partners, according to Nick Parker, vice president of global partner solutions at Microsoft. Speaking at Microsoft Inspire 2021, Parker noted that partners influence over 95% of Microsoft’s commercial revenue.
At Inspire, Microsoft has increased its industry clouds with a sustainability cloud, which aims to help organizations manage their environmental effects. The company offers industrial clouds for healthcare, retail, manufacturing, financial services, and the non-profit sector.
“We will continue to prioritize deep investments with our industry teams, building solutions with… partners in our industrial clouds,” Parker said.
Microsoft launched an industry strategy in fiscal 2018 that covered sales, business development, and engineering.
Partners have benefited from the cloud push into vertical markets. Chris Woodin, vice president of business development and alliances at Softchoice, a Toronto-based technology services and solutions provider, said Microsoft’s industrial clouds make it easier to market and land vertically-oriented offerings.
“[Microsoft has] capabilities built into the platform that uniquely solve a specific vertical use case, ”said Woodin. These capabilities not only facilitate sales, but also reduce the costs of Softchoice when deploying cloud services to meet a customer’s industrial needs. That’s because Microsoft’s engineering does a lot of the heavy lifting removing industry-specific customization, which makes it easier for Softchoice to customize a cloud for a particular customer, he noted. .
Core BTS, an Indianapolis-based MSP, said Microsoft’s industry focus aligns with Core BTS’s customer engagement strategy. “Over the past few years, we have worked to align sales movements and offerings with specific industry solutions,” said Tony Guidi, senior vice president of strategic partnerships at Core BTS.
Microsoft speeds up partner training
Regarding Microsoft’s channel training program, the company will increase its investment in skills by more than 250% for fiscal year 2022. The investment will cover programs such as virtual hands-on labs and technical skills content. digital on-demand, said Rodney Clark, vice president of channel sales and head of channels at Microsoft.
In addition, Microsoft will focus its training investments on specific product areas such as Power platform Commercial applications. Citing data from Forrester Research, Clark said the addressable market for business applications, including related services, will reach $ 582 billion by 2023. Low-code applications created with Microsoft PowerApps add an additional $ 40 billion to the addressable market, he added, citing Garner data.
Other areas of training investment include Azure, data analytics, and AI. Investments in security, compliance and identification, meanwhile, will provide partners with the foundation for growth, “from training and solution development to time to market,” he said. added.
“These skills initiatives represent our expansion of the chain’s technical acumen,” said Clark.
Updates to Microsoft’s distribution strategy
Other key developments in Microsoft Inspire are as follows:
- Microsoft said it is committed to increasing the representation of black and African-American partners in its ecosystem by 20%. “Creating a more inclusive partner community is our responsibility and can be a huge differentiator for us,” said David Totten, CTO of US Partner Solutions at Microsoft. “Over the next three years, we will also provide new routes and access to capital as well as personalized coaching and support for these businesses,” he said. The Microsoft’s Black and African American Partner Growth Initiative provides participating organizations with business resources and support.
- Partners offering offerings on the Microsoft AppSource and Azure Marketplace digital retailers will see commercial market fees drop to 3% from the industry standard of 20%, Parker said. Marketplaces have become important for IT service partners as a source of revenue.
- Microsoft will continue to invest in co-sellinging, noting a contractual co-sale value of $ 22.1 billion since fiscal 2018.
- Go-to-market programs will see an investment growth rate for fiscal 2022 that is four times the pace of investment for fiscal 2021, according to Microsoft.
Netrix acquires Contegix and expands in the northeast
Netrix, a Chicago-based MSP and professional services firm, has acquired the managed IT services business unit of Contegix and expects to enter into further deals this year.
Contegix, based in Pennsylvania, is expanding Netrix’s reach into the Northeast and Mid Atlantic regions. The deal also adds scale to Netrix IT’S M Service Desk and cloud managed service offerings.
The acquisition of Contegix follows Netrix’s December 2020 purchase of the Los Angeles-based managed services business unit of Prosum.
Netrix aims to create a national MSP and is also considering international expansion, said Rob Dang, CEO of Netrix. The increase in the company’s recurring revenue also motivated MSP’s acquisitions, he noted.
Other deals could emerge in 2021, although they are not directly related to the MSP sector, Dang said. Upcoming deals will focus on cloud refactoring, application development, data intelligence, and product development. Netrix, which was recapitalized by OceanSound Partners in 2020, is also targeting organic growth, Dang said.
Cantey Tech seeks to grow with PE support
LNC Capital Partners, a private equity firm specializing in mid-sized business service firms, has invested in Cantey Tech Consulting, an MSP based in Charleston, SC
Cantey Tech focuses on SMEs in the South East, while its subsidiary Cantey EDU provides IT support services to the education market. The MSP has grown at an average of over 20% per year over the past 13 years and the management team has set ambitious goals for the future, said Willis Cantey, President and CEO of Cantey.
LCN Capital Partner’s investment will provide support and resources to fuel Cantey Tech’s growth while maintaining its customer service levels, Cantey said. He cited the PE firm’s track record of supporting the expansion of portfolio companies, including growth through acquisitions.
Cantey Tech’s acquisition strategy is to acquire MSPs in the South East. The ideal acquisition candidates will have over $ 2 million in revenue, significant recurring revenue from SMEs and a strong team, Cantey said. “We are currently evaluating acquisitions as far west as Texas and as far north as Virginia,” he said.
Focus Investment Banking, an investment banking firm, represented Cantey Tech in the transaction.
In other transactions this week, West Hartford, Connecticut-based CompassMSP acquired the assets of Tarrytech Computer Consultants, based in Tarrytown, NY.
Additionally, AllCloud, a cloud professional services company, has acquired Integress, a Philadelphia-based data analytics company. Integress is a Snowflake Select Partner and an AWS Select Partner. AllCloud CEO Eran Gil said Integress’s data and analytics practice helps platforms like AWS and Salesforce come together in the middle, connecting back-office and front-end operations. office. AllCloud leverages AWS and Salesforce practices.
- SoftwareOne, a Waukesha, Wisc. Company that provides software and cloud offerings, has partnered with Commvault. As part of this agreement, SoftwareOne becomes the first global partner to provide Commvault Metallic backup and restore product as a service. SoftwareOne will sell the SaaS data protection offering under the name BackupSimple. Manoj Nair, Managing Director of Métallique, said SoftwareOne will build managed services on top of Metallic.
- Anexinet Corp., a Philadelphia-based digital business solutions provider, has added Ping Identity to its list of partners. The partnership will combine Ping Identity’s credential access management technology with Anexinet’s cybersecurity assessments.
- Aerospike, a NoSQL database company, has expanded its partner program, which focuses on systems integrators, ISVs, cloud service providers and value-added resellers (VARs). Updates to the Aerospike Accelerate Partner program include investments in technical, marketing and sales resources, according to the company. Program participants can access a solutions lab, migration factory, and the company’s Ignite Go-to-Market workshop. The latter identifies real-time data opportunities with partners.
- LogicMonitor, a monitoring and observability platform provider for MSPs, has added 13 VARs to its partner network: AE Business Solutions, Alchemy Technology Group, Compunet, Empowered Networks, Evolving Solutions, GDT, Myriad360, OneNeck IT Solutions, Prescriptive Data Solutions, Software1, Group Technology Solutions, Thundercat Technology and Trace3.
- Komprise, a data management as a service provider based in San Jose, Calif., Will support the AWS for Health initiative, which aims to facilitate migration to the cloud. The deal provides Komprise’s reseller partners “a path to accelerate cloud adoption by healthcare and life science customers through a lock-free approach to cloud migration and prioritization,” said said Caitlyn Possehl, head of Komprise’s global strategic alliance.
- Upstack, a web platform that sells cloud services through sales agents, has appointed Meghan Hambacher Wilkinson as senior vice president of customer experience. Wilkinson was previously CRO at Telarus.
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