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PC maker Lenovo is introducing a new reseller channel partner incentive
program for public sector sales, including sales to governments and education,
as part of the company’s overall effort to help its channel partners tap into
funds from the Obama administration’s economic stimulus package (American
Recovery and Reinvestment Act).

The incentive program follows Lenovo’s launch of a resources Website to help partners
map actual stimulus funds to customers to Lenovo solutions
, plus a
stimulus funds hotline, staffed from 8 a.m.
to 8 p.m. EDT
to field solution provider questions about how their specific situation can be
mapped to funds available from the stimulus package.

“We wanted to be prescriptive in terms of what solutions Lenovo has to offer,”
Mike Schmedlen, director of worldwide education strategy at Lenovo, tells
Channel Insider.

The new incentive program pays partners a bonus if they increase their Lenovo
public sector revenues, paying smaller partners $2,500 if they increase their
business by $25,000. Larger partners receive a 1 percent payout if they
increase their business by 15 percent.

“We’ve crafted it so it’s relevant to both large and small partners,” says Wes
Towns, director of transactional
product and program management for Lenovo’s channel program. “It’s a reward so
they will focus with Lenovo on the public sector.”

The program runs June 1 through Sept. 30.

“Our public sector peak season is those four months both for government and
education,” says Schmedlen.

The incentive program adds to a number of benefits Lenovo had already
announced, including a demo program, co-op funding, briefings for public sector
customers and deal registration.

In addition, Schmedlen points out that Lenovo has crafted solutions geared
specifically to education, such as Lenovo Classroom Director. The technology
enables teachers to take control of students’ screens. Teachers can blank
out screens, block instant messaging, block certain Websites or send pop
quizzes, among other functions.

“This gives control back to the teacher, and they don’t have to have advanced
IT knowledge to do it,” says Schmedlen. Schmedlen estimates that $80
billion of stimulus money has been earmarked for education.