Lenovo Plans Portal Partner Play, Extends Best Buy Agreement

By Jessica Davis  |  Posted 2007-02-08 Email Print this article Print


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Lenovo will migrate partners from IBM's partner portal to a new Lenovo portal that the company says will enhance communications.

As part of Lenovo's plan to complete its separation from IBM, over the next few weeks the company is migrating channel partners from the IBM Partner World portal to a new Lenovo portal.

The change comes nearly two years after the Chinese PC giant acquired IBM's PC division. The company also plans to move its North American headquarters from IBM's facility in Raleigh, N.C., to another one in the same city.

Stephen Mungall, vice president of worldwide and Americas channels, said the portal will offer the same services partners had come to expect with the IBM site, and more.

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"The content that is in the IBM system today is clearly the content that will be there tomorrow," he said. "This is a step to being self-sufficient and to improving the experience with partners."

The new portal is based on PRM (partner relationship management) software that will enable partners to track their results and will provide better communications between Lenovo and partners, Mungall said. He hinted at additional new features, but refused to provide more details.

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Lenovo also announced an extension of its partnership with Best Buy For Business, marking a further expansion of what used to be IBM's PC business in the retail channel.

The new deal adds the ThinkPad T60 and the Lenovo 3000 N100 notebooks to the lineup of the company's offerings that customers can purchase at Best Buy For Business. In addition, now customers can buy the machines on-site and take them home immediately rather than ordering them from the store's Lenovo kiosk.

"The retail channel is very important for us in terms of very small businesses," Mungall said. "We want to make our products available where the small business customers are buying." Lenovo has made the small business and consumer markets in the United States a priority, he said.

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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