Lenovo has recently ramped up focus on two areas for its North American channel – whom is largely responsible for the company’s prevalence in the enterprise market. With 90 percent of company revenue driven by partners, its channel strategy is critical to performance.
Sammy Kinlaw, Lenovo’s channel chief in North America, said the new focus in on higher-margin PCs and data centers as the tech giant has now created a dedicated data center channel program.
Having held the leading position in PCs globally, Lenovo had wanted to continue the PC push while also encouraging its partners to sell servers and data center appliances to these same customers. Lenovo is now focusing each of these efforts individually – offering reward incentives to partners selling higher-end PCs, and subsequently creating an entirely separate group to focus on data center needs.
The dedicated Data Center Group will charge server, storage and HCI (hyperconverged infrastructure) appliance sales. The HCI offerings were developed jointly with Nutanix, with more extensions to come to the SDN (software-defined network) portfolio. This development came along with the introduction of 14 additional servers to its data center portfolio in June.
Lenovo will now be offering two classes of servers: the first combining x86 servers and ThinkServers into a single ThinkSystem portfolio; the second will bundle software from Nutanix and Microsoft to comprise its ThinkAgile portfolio. Also in June, Lenovo announced the coming of its first ThinkAgile Servers running Microsoft Azure Stack.
As it comes to the PC initiative, resellers will have to rise up to the challenge of finding the right buyers who are willing to invest in new technology from its high-end portfolio. Businesses who are reliant on their channel partners usually have a customer base that is looking for ways to save – as companies like ours at IT Xchange see when resellers come to us for Lenovo technology on the secondary market, trying to meet the budgetary requirements of their customers.
That being said, those customers looking for the best of the best in enterprise PC computing are out there, and Lenovo is pulling out all of the stops to accommodate them. The company recently unveiled its smallest workstation ever – the ThinkStation P320 – then announced upcoming Smart Office software as well as partnerships with Microsoft and Intel, and even promised some upcoming augmented and virtual reality applications.
Lenovo has also started a PC-as-a-service program (PCaaS) which offers the end-to-end solution of hardware, peripherals and managed services at a fixed monthly cost. This will include configuration and deployment, IT support, hardware & software management, maintenance and disposal, which is said to improve the total cost of ownership (TCO).
Total cost of ownership can also be significantly reduced by purchasing discontinued or constrained product, which allows your customer to maintain fewer or existing standards for longer periods of time. We can help in this compacity with products that range from new/recently discontinued, recertified, and refurbished off-lease – available for a fraction of the original cost. We provide our best pricing to Lenovo resellers, so contact us today to see how we can help you.