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IT distributor Tech Data has formed partnerships with managed services platform providers N-able Technologies and ConnectWise as part of an effort to give its VARs a way to get into managed services.

The Clearwater, Fla., distributor disclosed the new initiative during its TechSelect conference in Salt Lake City May 3. The N-able platform will offer remote management and monitoring, and the ConnectWise platform will offer professional services automation.

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There are many applications that go into forming a managed services offering but no architecture holding them together, according to Bob O’Malley, Tech Data’s senior vice president for U.S. marketing.

The partnership with N-able will enable the distributor to offer some of those solutions that are increasingly being adapted to a managed services model such as security monitoring and threat assessment; print management; IP telephony; e-mail management and archiving; unified communications; and remote data replication and disaster recovery.

And by marrying the N-able services together with those from other providers, Tech Data said it can create the kind of architecture needed to make it easier for VARs to enter the managed services space.

Tech Data initially forged a relationship with N-able in 2005 through its TechSelect Affiliate program. As part of the new expanded services alliance announced this week, Tech Data will market and distribute N-able’s hosted Momentum System and MSP-offered Velocity System solutions.

TechSelect is Tech Data’s community of SMB resellers, and the affiliate program is a forum for members to engage emerging manufacturers, ISVs and service providers such as N-able and ConnectWise.

N-able said it will provide the corresponding service and support that accompanies the Momentum System and Velocity System including key areas such as service provisioning and hosting, program development, technical support, training, education,
and services integration.

To promote the new offerings, Tech Data and N-able are offering500 free Momentum System year-long licenses, O’Malley announced.

The ConnectWise relationship is also an extension of a three-year-old existing partnership between the managed services company and the distributor, O’Malley said. The PSA provider launched in 1998 and has been a member of the TechSelect affiliate program.

And those two providers won’t be the end of the distributor’s efforts to enhance offerings and help VARs make the move to managed services.

“We are going to become much more involved in managed services initiatives,” said O’Malley.