Tech Data StreamOne Solutions Store Offers One-Stop App, Cloud ShoppingBy Alison Diana | Posted 2012-01-23 Email Print
Re-Thinking HR: What Every CIO Needs to Know About Tomorrow's Workforce
Tech Data's StreamOne Solutions Store is a one-stop platform designed to help solution providers quickly sell, support and manage applications sales and cloud services sales. The distributor also promises a white label version of the offering due this summer as well as providing customers with a single bill for all services.
Tech Data today launched StreamOne Solutions Store, a one-stop platform designed to help solution providers more quickly and easily sell, support, and manage sales of applications and cloud services to their customers.
Now available to all Tech Data partners in the United States, StreamOne Solutions Store allows solution providers to offer customers both on-premise and Software as a Service from participating ISVs and cloud-service providers, said Joe Quaglia, senior vice president at the Clearwater, Fla.-based distributor, in an interview with Channel Insider. The store is combined with StreamOne’s Software License Selector, an online tool that guides resellers through a few steps to ensure they are selecting the appropriate solution for their customers.
"We’re signing ISVs and cloud providers every day. There are hundreds of thousands of independent software vendors and cloud providers in the market today," said Quaglia.
Tech Data is identifying participants through existing partnerships with developers such as Oracle, Microsoft, IBM, and Red Hat, he said. Reseller partners recommend ISV participants, and other developers approach Tech Data and request membership, Quaglia said. Tech Data reviews vendors’ applications and notifies them within 24 hours, he said. Criteria include financial viability, relevance to partners, and having an established business, said Quaglia.
"We wanted to be in total control. We felt the value we could offer required us to be in control. Being in control means you have to be tightly integrated with your partner community," added Quaglia.
Following approval, ISVs and cloud providers pay a $1,000-per-year fee and receive the APIs necessary to become integrated into Tech Data’s platform, he said. Participation could give ISVs and cloud providers access to Tech Data’s community of more than 60,000 VARs in the U.S.
"Partnering with Tech Data and the StreamOne Solutions Store will allow Aplicor to offer our innovative Cloud applications through the channel – thousands of reseller partners," said James Arnott, director of worldwide marketing and channel development at Aplicor.
Resellers log-on using their Tech Data identification, and can then view a searchable menu of participating products based on vendor or product name, category, or criteria. Solution providers receive one invoice for their end-customers, track their company’s sales and outstanding invoices, and purchase clients’ software within minutes, he said.
"It’s very simple. That’s what’s taken the process from days or hours to minutes," added Travis Vigneau, business development manager at Tech Data.
In addition to simplifying the often complex process of selling software licenses, StreamOne Solutions Store will give resellers more access to new, vertical, and niche applications, according to Tech Data.
"When our customers request niche applications we want to deliver. The StreamOne Solutions Store will give me the visibility and vendor relationships I need to offer my customers an array of cloud products and services," said Norman Rosenthal, president and CEO of Sterling Rose LLC.
StreamOne Solutions Store includes other tools such as software reviews; vendor-provided collateral including white papers and case studies; videos; FAQs, and social media streams for blogs and RSS feeds, for example, said Vigneau. This provides partners with a centralized source of information, further improving their productivity, he said.
"It’s very feature-rich," Vigneau told Channel Insider. "Resellers come here and learn everything they need about an application."
Solution providers can create a quote from the platform, which can be personalized with the VAR’s logo and other custom content such as a message to the client or prospect. Keys for on-premise software are stored within StreamOne Solutions Store and customers receive a VAR-logoed link to begin provisioning hosted software.
"It looks as though it came right from the reseller," said Vigneau.
In addition, resellers can use consolidated billing for all clients’ applications and services. For example, a customer that bought 14 line-items will receive one bill, not 14, he said. Also, VARs can add promotional codes for vendor-provided discounts.
Training is available via Tech Data’s Reseller Resource Center. It includes demonstrations and tutorial videos. Solution providers can manage everything through the Reseller Portal, which gives channel executives insight into short- and long-term sales; invoice information; on-hold orders; trial programs and their expiration dates, and renewals. The digital locker houses information on software licenses, SaaS products, provisioned software, and billing. It also includes a holistic view of the reseller’s address book.
In its next upgrade, Tech Data plans to create a white-label version that solution providers can share with customers, said Quaglia.
"In the next release of StreamOne Solution Store, we are going to create a white label version of the store to allow resellers to repackage it, put it on their sites and properties, and represent our entire catalog to their customers in their name and brand. It’s currently in development and we’re expecting a late summer release on that," he said.