New distribution partnership with Arrow ECS means more channel and end-user involvement
From itbusiness.ca: 7/9/2009 9:08:00 AM By: Maxine Cheung
Igloo Software, a Canadian online community and social networking software vendor, wants to increase its channel business by 55 per cent by the end of next year, and is working towards this goal by partnering with value added distributor, Arrow Enterprise Computing Solutions (ECS).
Arrow ECS, a business segment of Englewood, Colo.-based Arrow Electronics Inc., is the first distributor to represent Igloo's Software's entire integrated communications suite of solutions.
Dan Latendre, CEO of Kitchener, Ont.-based Igloo, said the company builds online communities for organizations of all sizes. This includes workplace communities such as Intranets, and external marketplace communities where employees can establish relationships with others who are outside of it.
"We offer an integrated communication suite that includes Web content management tools and a suite of collaboration tools such as wikis, blogs, forums and social networking," Latendre said. "This is all provided through the cloud as a software-as-a-service (SaaS) offering, which is hosted by us."
The company currently does about 25 per cent of its overall business through the channel, but Latendre says he wants to increase this to 80 per cent by the end of next year.
"We do business worldwide and we have about 20 to 25 partners, which include ISVs, VARs and consultants," he said. "We'll fold (these) partners into Arrow's distribution because we'd prefer they buy through distribution so we can centralize our support and services."
Robert Boulet, vice-president of Arrow ECS in Canada, says the distributor, which focuses on higher enterprise and software and storage solutions, has a few hundred partners in Canada and growing.
"Igloo solutions let partners have more discussions and stickiness with their end-users," Boulet said. "There are limitless opportunities because the solutions are applicable to lots of verticals, as long as people have a need to work together."
Because Igloo solutions are hosted as a SaaS, Arrow ECS doesn't have any products to ship. Its role, Boulet said, is to help accelerate Igloo's growth by being a channel-enabler to reach more resellers and end-users. The company also assists in training partners on the Igloo product line.
"We're in this game to support our partner and channel community," Boulet said. "So if partners grow, we grow."
The Igloo solutions are sold on a per month charge, either on a per-user or unlimited-based model, on a 12, 24, or 36-month lease term. Latendre said there are Web, Enterprise and a Professional editions as part of Igloo's software suite.
As for working with other distributors in the future, Latendre said he's "monitoring" this right now. The company is in the midst of working with Arrow ECS to create a partner portal, which should be up by the end of Q3 this year, he added.
"Everybody in the market now is looking to implement some kind of social software in this business," Latendre said. "This is an opportunity for partners to bring complete social solutions to their customers in a branded kind of way, with less risk involvement because users are renting the software instead of buying it."