Software giant celebrates 10th annual partner awards ceremony with “biggest ever” gala in Toronto
Navantis was among the big winners at this week’s Microsoft Impact Awards, taking home awards in three categories, including Sustainability Partner of the Year, Windows Phone Application Partner of the Year, and Portals and Collaboration Partner of the Year.
It was Microsoft Canada’s 10th year presenting the Impact Awards to top partners, and Robert King, director of channel strategy, development and marketing at Microsoft Canada said the company’s goal was to have its biggest ever Impact Awards, from the event’s location at the newly-opened Four Seasons in Toronto’s Yorkville, to the event’s host, Canadian comedian and actor Sean Cullen.
“My goal is to really connect to what happened in Toronto at WPC, to keep that momentum that we created there,” King said.
While it may have been the biggest Impacts ever, it was actually a smaller class than previous years. King said partners reported that the 42 awards handed out last year were just too much for one night of presentations, and as a result, the company decided to pare the ranks back to 25 categories this year.
That doesn’t mean there wasn’t anything new in the class – the company introduced new awards for Windows 8 applications, Windows Phone applications, and Windows Azure applications, showing off the important the company is placing on applications with its current launch wave. King said with the focus on apps, the new awards helped to “get new types of partners into the mix” for the evening’s festivities.
And although the sheer number of awards may have declined, the number of submissions has actually spiked. King said the company fielded 232 submissions for this year’s Impacts, up 52 per cent from last year. In total, 52 different partner organizations were recognized as finalists across the 25 categories.
“We had finalists from various programs, from various segments, from SMB to midmarket to Dynamics,” King said. “We’ve got a real mix of every partner type.”
Along with honouring partners and giving new Microsoft Canada president Maxwell Long and new channel chief Greg Larnder another chance to get in front of the community, Microsoft used the Impacts to formally introduce the new head of the Canadian SMS&P group, Mark Dodds. Dodds, originally from the UK but based out of Redmond most recently, comes to Microsoft Canada as SMS&P chief after most recently serving as the company’s worldwide general manager for its public sector business.
While it’s been a year of change for Microsoft Canada, with three top new executives joining the ranks, the Impacts in many ways reflect back on the traditions the company has developed over the last decade.
“This is the culmination of 10 years of growing together,” King said. “It’s a testament to the investments that we made, that our partners have made, and how those investments have increased incrementally year over year.”
Below is a full list of all the Awards’ winners. Congratulations to all the awards winners and finalists!
- Microsoft Cloud Partner of the Year: Infusion
- Private Cloud Partner of the Year: Infront Consulting Group
- Sustainability Partner of the Year: Navantis
- Windows Azure Platform ISV Partner of the Year: RESAAS
- Windows Azure Application Partner of the Year: Ayuda Media Systems
- Windows 8 Application Partner of the Year: RunAtServer
- Windows Phone Application Partner of the Year: Navantis
- Business Intelligence Partner of the Year: Ideaca
- Communications Technology Partner of the Year: ComputerTalk
- Content Management Partner of the Year: DataBind
- Desktop Partner of the Year: Acrodex
- Distributor Partner of the Year: Tech Data Canada
- Microsoft Dynamics CRM Partner of the Year: Altus Dynamics
- Microsoft Dynamics ERP Partner of the Year: Thinkmax Consulting
- Hosting Partner of the Year: SoftCom
- ISV/Software Solutions Industry Partner of the Year: IQmetrix
- Learning Competency Partner of the Year: Global Knowledge
- Portals and Collaboration Partner of the Year: Navantis
- Server Platform Partner of the Year: Itergy
- Volume Licensing Partner of the Year: Compugen
- Web Development Partner of the Year: Affinity Systems
- IAMCP Canada Partnership Award: ProServeIT and Softchoice
- Community Leadership Partner of the Year: Compugen
- Customer Experience Partner of the Year: Altus Dynamics
- Marketing Innovation Partner of the Year: Softchoice