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Six months after it removed the partner requirement for reselling its
products, Oracle is declaring the action to be a success.

Oracle made the change—allowing sales through distribution via the Oracle VAD
Remarketer program—so that resellers that did not want to pay the fees associated
with being an Oracle partner could still resell the company’s products.

Oracle now has over 200 resellers that have participated in the program,
submitting a total of about 1,000 orders, according to Judson Althoff, vice
president of Oracle’s global platform and distribution sales and head of
Oracle’s technology channel program office.

Most transactions are well below $5,000, but it was money that Oracle was
leaving on the table in years past, Althoff said. That’s because it wasn’t
economical for resellers to pursue such deals. They had to pay $2,000 to
participate in Oracle’s partner program and sign lengthy agreements.

Now, by going through distribution instead, VARs can pursue those kinds of
deals without the expense of the Oracle partner program. That’s something that
appealed to Paul Stearns, president of Advanced Consulting Enterprises, a
former Oracle partner who quit the program after the dot-com bust so he
wouldn’t have to pay the fees anymore.

Stearns recently became an Oracle remarketer when one of his clients came to
him with a problem. A vendor that his client was buying software from said it
needed a $30,000 Oracle product as the back end to the new solution.

"The proposal was not priced properly for the client," Stearns said.
"This client was a smallish company. The vendor that had proposed the
Oracle product had proposed using an Enterprise Edition Oracle with unlimited
use licensing."

But the client only needed 13 to 14 users, so Stearns did the research to find
out exactly what the client needed and in the process found out about the
remarketer program.

"I was very pleased that Oracle was selling through distribution,"
Stearns said. "Oracle is one of the few products that you can get full
markup on, so your margins are quite good. I’m not going to summer in Europe
this year, but percentagewise [that’s] better than selling a 19-inch monitor."

Stearns was able to sell the Oracle part of the solution to the client for
$2,500, a far cry from the original $30,000 quote.

"My client was very happy because they were able to get the hardware and
the database and everything from me, and [were] able to save a lot of
money," he said. "I wasn’t out there trying to sell him the most
expensive thing that I could. So he was happy. I’m happy."

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