Citrix Taps Ingram Micro for All Distribution

By Jessica Davis  |  Print this article Print

Virtualization specialist Citrix is turning over all distribution to Ingram Micro. The move takes Citrix virtualization and infrastructure products out of the hands of competing distributors Avnet, Alternative Technology and Tech Data. Analysts say Citrix channel partners and resellers will reap greater benefits from Ingram Micro as a result.

Citrix is dumping all distributors in North America in favor of an exclusive arrangement with Ingram Micro as part of a plan to create a more focused approach to the market.

For Citrix VARs that already go through Ingram Micro the change is likely to mean added benefits and rewards. But they won't be able to buy Citrix through the other distributors--Avnet, Alternative Technology and Tech Data--anymore. 

And for those who deal through another distributor and not Ingram Micro (about 120 of the company's 1,900 North American channel partners), Citrix will offer a transition program to Ingram Micro. The change will take effect on Aug. 30.

Citrix recently named career VAR Tom Flink as channel chief 

The virtualization and application delivery infrastructure vendor announced the move July 25, saying that it will "significantly increase the value to the channel over and above what they already receive." For example, Ingram Micro is planning to increase its Citrix-dedicated resources.

"We are pretty pleased that Citrix likes what they are doing for them," Ingram Micro's CEO Greg Spierkel told Channel Insider. "We are probably one of their newest partners but they feel that we are doing a real strong job for them." Spierkel estimates that as much as 75 percent of Citrix's sales go through distribution. During its most recent fiscal quarter, Citrix reported revenues of $392 million.

Citrix says that benefits for partners will include:

The Ingram-Citrix Smart Enablement Program that will reward eligible CSAs for Citrix purchases. Earned credits can be redeemed for Citrix certification courses and end-user demand generation programs.

An increase in Citrix-dedicated resources to support the CSA channel through marketing tools, technical support, business development, licensing specialists, and field deployable sales engineer and product specialists.

For Citrix, the move offers a number of benefits as well. Gartner analyst Tiffani Bova says that vendors should regularly evaluate their partnerships.

"All vendors should make it part of their annual review process to ensure they have the right alliances, distribution arrangements and channel partners to provide maximum coverage in the market while maintaining a high level of partner satisfaction," Bova says. "The addition and deletion of distribution partners happens all the time in the technology market, each driven by different triggers based on a particular company’s requirement at any given point in time."

Jessica Davis covers the channel for eWeek and Channel Insider. Her technology journalism career began well before anyone heard of the World Wide Web and has included stints at Infoworld, Electronic News/EDN, and the Philadelphia Business Journal. Her work has also appeared on CNN and Forbes.com. She has covered hardware, software and networking, as well as the business side of technology. She has won several journalism awards, including a national ASBPE award for best staff-written column, and was named Marketing Computers hardest working tech journalist on their inaugural list of top tech journalists. Jessica can be reached at jessica.davis@ziffdavisenterprise.com

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