With a little help from my friends: Symantec introduces Alliance Network

Symantec North American channel chief Randy Cochran

North American channel chief : “This really came about in recognition of what our channel partners are doing every day.”

With new Symantec Alliance Network, the security vendor is looking to bundle up and get itself and its channel partners into an easier solutions mode.

The Network partnerships see Symantec bundle its gear with hardware and complementary software offerings from a variety of other vendors. Those pre-approved and pre-configured setups will then be SKUed up together at distribution for the company’s solution providers.

“This really came about in recognition of what our channel partners are doing every day – knitting together solutions from a number of different vendors,” said Randy Cochran, Symantec’s North American channel chief.

The goal of its first four integrations – with Dell, ExaGrid, HP and Quantum – is to package up combinations that work well together. In the case of , it’s a bundle of ’s ProLiant servers with Symantec’s gateway security offerings focused at the upper midmarket and lower enterprise markets. In the case of , it’s a bundle of hardware with Symantec’s BackupExec targeted at the SMB and midmarket segments. The and partnerships focus on the enterprise opportunity.

So why bring such pre-packaged solutions together?

In each case, the companies are seeking to “address some very complex problems with a very simple solution.”

The program also covers joint training and support to help the companies’ channel partners sell those solutions in the market as well as incentives to encourage them to do so.

“We’re trying to get away from the piece-by-piece scenario,” Cochran explained. “We’ve got all of the educational resources, FAQs and all of those things already done for [the joint solutions] and we have a co-operative ecosystem here that’s a reflection of what’s already happening out there today.”

Solutions produced through the Alliance Network are available to all of Symantec’s North American channel partners from Registered through to Platinum, according to Cochran.

The announcement of the first four partners in the Alliance Network is still pretty fresh, but it’s evident Cochran and his team still have more ideas for ways to connect with their fellow vendors. Details are few – for some reason, Cochran was in no rush to pre-announce anything. But it’s pretty clear Dell, ExaGrid, HP and Quantum are not going to be along with Symantec in this thing for too long.

“I suspect we’ll hear number five in the near future,” Cochran said. “Watch this space to see where the next four [partnerships] are coming from.”

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