Lenovo looks for server enterprise partners

Lenovo has unveiled a range of server products as it gets ready for the IBM x86 business to become part of the fold and is looking for resellers with enterprise expertise

Lenovo has taken the wraps off a raft of server products as it looks to establish itself as a major player in the enterprise market ahead of its completion of the IBM x86 acquisition.

The vendor has its own Thinkserver range and has been working to establish itself over the last couple of years as a serious player in the market and has been building the channel to support those ambitions.

In June it appointed Arrow Electronics as the distributor that would be handling its server and storage lines.

But as it releases a tower aimed at the SME space and racks for the enterprise the vendor is holding an event in London where it will be courting potential partners that have not sold its products before but have the expertise and contacts in the enterprise space.

Tom Goodwin, head of server and storage UK and Ireland at Lenovo, said that it had around 85 resellers attending the event and although some were existing partners that had sold its PC range it was also targeting some fresh blood.

He added that it had been investing in its own server technology and had struck a partnership with EMC to deliver storage arrays and had made significant efforts to increase revenue opportunities for the channel in the past two years.

"We can leverage our existing channel and existing relationships with the end user and a lot of Lenovo's existing strengths to become number one in the market," he said.

"The channel can provide the specialist skills we need to glue the solution together for the customer," he added that there was already growing excitement about what would happen at the end of the year when the deal to acquire IBM's x86 server business was finally concluded.

Darren Phelps, UK director of channel at Lenovo, said that the vendor had been openly committed to developing a PC plus strategy as it looked to move beyond its core market and had solid positions in the tablet and smartphone markets and now wanted to add servers and storage to the list.

"The x86 space offers a great growth potential for us and we are now in the heavy planning stage as we move closer to the end of the year [and complete the acquisition of the IBM x86 business]," he said.

"There is an opportunity for channel growth and we are planning to make sure that there is a seamless approach to the [unified Lenovo and IBM server channels] and we have over 2,000 partners and are growing 30% year-on-year," he said.

The latest products are already shipping and will be in the hands of distribution this week.

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