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Avnet Technology Solutions has expanded its education portfolio with training courses for Lenovo System x servers and its Flex blades, servers and integrated systems. The courses are available to Avnet’s channel partners and customers globally through its training division, Avnet Academy. Supporting the global Lenovo contract, Avnet also offers pilot partner programs with incentives to drive growth in education services.

Training and certification programs offered through distributors help their channel partners sell and support their vendor lines. As an existing strategic supplier for Avnet, the Lenovo training agreement further supports partners and their customers to implement and maintain business solutions that rely on Lenovo technology, said Avnet.

Education and training has not been readily available on these Lenovo products, said Hees Ham, vice president of Education Services, North America, at Avnet Technology Solutions. “We’ve been developing this relationship to execute on a global perspective, and we’re now able to bring training globally in both classroom and virtual settings to our channel partners and customers.”

“It’s important for channel partners to take advantage of the training program opportunities because it helps them ramp up in skill so their internal folks become more knowledgeable about the products and solutions that Lenovo has to offer,” Ham explained. “If they are better educated, it allows them to provide more comprehensive solutions to their customers.”

For customers, the objective is to maximize the return on their technology investment. “We believe training is a critical piece to enabling [customers] to get the greatest return,” he added

Avnet’s training business is part of its overall strategy to provide end-to-end solutions for its customers. Over the past year, Avnet has continued to bulk up its education and IT training and certification services, primarily to align with high-growth areas and its solutions specialist businesses. These business units are typically aligned regionally to ensure that Avnet partners have the right resources, support and technical expertise available to them.

Last year, Avnet formalized the Education Services specialist business unit to focus on training solutions with offerings across its supplier line. In addition, the distributor expanded its courses in high-growth areas with connected and virtual classrooms through its acquisition of ExitCertified, a provider of certified IT training in North America.