Acronis channel mushrooms with virtual partnerships

Acronis says it has Microsoft and VMware to thank for a significant increase in partners worldwide.

The disaster recovery and data protection provider gained 3000 new partners globally in the last half of 2011; 500 of those from the Asia Pacific region, bringing the local total to 2000. It attributes the increase partly to the launch of its Global Partner Program, but says its visualization solutions are generating the most buzz.

A/NZ Pacific general manager Karl Sice told CRN Acronis’ partnerships with Microsoft and VMware for Hyper V and vmProtect products had proved lucrative. He declined to name any of the newly-gained partners but said small to medium businesses were starting to feel more confident about implementing visualization solutions.

“It continues to be quite a strong area, especially with SMBs which have moved from just talking about it to actual using it, and rolling it out across all sides of the organization,” he said.

Together with its distributors Datastor and Ingram Micro, Acronis will continue on a virtualization-specific partner recruitment drive throughout 2012. Sice said this year the company will focus more on the quality of partnerships rather than quantity.

“We’re ramping up the education piece, providing sales and technology opportunities for partners to get trained on Acronis, and putting investment on trying to generate demand,” he said. “We want to give opportunities to our community to know our solutions better and drive more interest and more opportunities in the marketplace as well.”

He is betting on the Global Partner Program to entice new channel members to Acronis’ business.

The multi-tier network offers a number of benefits spanning finance, training, support and marketing.

“[The program] introduces a level of structure in how we serve our partner community, particularly for partners who are growing significantly with us,” Sice said. “We can provide additional leads and opportunities for earning more, which has previously been available but not as structured. We’re getting to the stage now where it’s part of our process rather than just doing it as we can.”