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Thanks to a veritable explosion in the number of mobile devices needing to be connected to a wireless network, the opportunity to provide managed services around those devices and networks has greatly expanded.

To make it simpler for managed service providers (MSPs) to tap into that opportunity, Aerohive Networks’ new channel program helps enable partners to leverage capital investments in the cloud that the company already has made and tap into a big data lake that it built to create applications that add value to their networking service.

Rather than having to build out a management plan themselves and then create a repository to house massive amounts of data, MSPs that participate in the company’s AdvantageMSP program can more profitably deliver high value managed services using cloud services that Aerohive Networks already has built, said Mathew Edwards, Aerohive product marketing manager.

“WiFi networks are essentially becoming a utility,” said Edwards. “This creates an opportunity for partners to increase revenue.”

One of the MSPs participating in this program is Tekmark Global Solutions.  There are a lot of options when it comes to networking, but as the entity responsible for managing the network, Tekmark concluded that Aerohive Networks had the best offering from a price, service and product perspective, said Jeff Cortley, vice president of engineering services and solutions for Tekmark Global Solutions. “A lot of customers want to be able to offload network traffic from carriers to reduce costs,” he said. “But they still want their WiFi access to be ubiquitous.”

The fact that Aerohive Networks made the investment to create a big data repository is also attractive, Cortley said. Tekmark focuses mainly on managing mobile devices deployed in retail locations that need to reliably access a wireless network. Cortley said he envisions being able to leverage the data Aerohive Networks collects to build applications on behalf of its customers.

For big data, it’s still early days. Yet the capital investments required to deliver IT services at scale are increasing. For many MSPs, the most effective way to rise to the challenge is to defer as much of the cost as possible for delivering a managed service on a vendor partner.

Michael Vizard has been covering IT issues in the enterprise for more than 25 years as an editor and columnist for publications such as InfoWorld, eWEEK, Baseline, CRN, ComputerWorld and Digital Review.