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Cloudera is turning to the channel to build out its business around
Apache Hadoop. A new partner program will also introduce what Cloudera is
calling the industry’s first Hadoop certification program.

According
to Ed Albanese, head of business development at Cloudera, the installed base
for the open source Apache Hadoop is growing, and that’s driving opportunities
for the channel. As a strong supporter of Hadoop with developers regularly
working on applications for the Hadoop platform, Cloudera is launching the
Cloudera Connect Partner Program, which is open to resellers, system
integrators, ISVs and independent hardware vendors (IHVs).

“I
think what’s going to catch both partner and customer interest is the fact that
we have the industry’s first certification program [for Hadoop],” Albanese
said.

The
core tenet of the program is “zero to Hadoop,” so the company is looking to
work with partners of all experience levels in Hadoop, including those that are
looking through the eyes of someone fresh to the open source platform. Through
the program, Cloudera will provide training and marketing resources through a
partner portal, a staff and technology certification program for Hadoop, deal
registration for Cloudera Enterprise, and various pieces of sales and marketing
collateral.

One
major feature that Cloudera expects will be of interest to its partners is the
ability to not only certify staff on Hadoop, but also technology. Hadoop is a
distributed computing infrastructure, so it is no small feat to certify Hadoop
interoperability on a partner’s technology, Albanese said.

“We’re
allowing them to take their existing technology and then, through access to all
of our resources, be able to get their technology to work with Apache Hadoop,”
he said.

Cloudera
will be offering its comprehensive Hadoop knowledge base to partners – a
knowledge base it currently only provides to customers. Free technical training
and standard discounts on technology certification training will also be
available. Partners will also have access to a developer portal.

“This
certification program is a great step to enable customers and partners to tell
their stories,” Albanese said.

The
announcement of the Connect Partner Program follows closely on the heels of the
announcement that Cloudera and Dell had jointly released a complete Apache
Hadoop solution. Dell has joined the program as an IHV. Likewise, several other
vendors are on board as IHVs or ISV, including Cisco, Fujitsu, SGI and IBM.

With
a mix of vendors, IHVs, ISVs, systems integrators and resellers in the program,
Albanese said he’s not concerned about creating channel conflict. Not everyone
in the program will be authorized to resell Cloudera products. Instead, the
company will be selecting resellers from the program based on the geographies
and verticals they serve, he said.

Cloudera
plans to expand its coverage areas, and resellers will be chosen based on the regions
they serve. He described the interest from the community as “huge.”

“We
get inquiries on a daily basis from partners,” he said.