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Arrow ECS is launching a new
partner-enablement program, called Empower, to help solution providers sell
data center technologies, beginning with business intelligence and analytics
solutions from IBM. 

Under the Empower enablement
program, Arrow ECS, a division of Englewood, Colo.-based Arrow Electronics,
will offer partners technology solutions, opportunity analyses, education,
demand-generation services and business resources to sell IBM Cognos

technology is emerging as an essential tool for identifying new
revenue-generation opportunities, as well as to control unproductive
expenditures. Further, demand is shifting from measurement to analysis,
forecasting and optimization leading to predictive analysis,” Sean Kerins,
president of Arrow ECS in North America, said in a statement. 

“Arrow ECS is committed
to helping solution providers pursue this market, given 80 percent of large and
midsize organizations purchase BI software, yet few have standardized
enterprise-wide deployments. Also, midmarket companies are focused more on BI
technology and depend on solution providers to guide them in the
decision-making and implementation process.”

The Empower program won’t be
exclusive to business analytics, however. And over time, the program will
incorporate different data center solutions as partners need.

“It will be an ongoing
program and messaging framework. It’s really meant to help shape and unify the
way we engage partners to support the way in which they go to market,”
Kerins said. 

“Most of our partners
were either typically loyal to a single vendor or they were organized around
products. Over time, we’ve seen a lot of our reseller products evolve their
go-to-market model from one that had product categories to practices. It suggests
that they’re a little more sensitive to the needs of their customers, and
customers want choices so they’re taking a more application-centric view.”

In addition to product and
sales resources, the Empower program will also offer market, vertical and white-space
opportunity analyses, and education and training resources.  

For Greg Boyd, vice
president of the national business intelligence performance management practice
at Matrix, a consultancy based in Atlanta, Ga., the program enables faster
sales to customers.

“It gives us access to
skills and capabilities that can help us better support our customers and
identify new opportunities in the marketplace with faster time-to-value for our
clients. It decreases the cycle time from prospect to close,” Boyd said.
“From that perspective, we see great value in this program.”

For Arrow, he said the
program brings more focus to the BI space. “We have better access to both
technical and sales resources and marketing resources to assist IBM in
executing on their business analytics go-to-market strategy.”

While its initial focus is
on the IBM Cognos products, Kerins said the program’s structure will help
Arrow ECS work with partners on strategy to build holistic technology practices
rather than focusing on single-vendor product sets.

“We’re building
practices around those same disciplines that are somewhat supplier-agnostic,
and they’re meant to help the partner focus on the customer’s requirements
before they choose technology,” he said. “It’s going to be a little more
surgical–a little more targeted in the approach–but we’re going to leverage
our POS and other business intel to use in a tailored fashion to help our
partners grow.”

“As we continue to
evolve our model and unify our go-to-market approach, services is becoming a
bigger and bigger part of our strategy,” Kerins said.