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NetApp supports partners on the journey to hybrid

Cloud data player prepared to support those that are looking to move into a position where they can deliver high value to customers

NetApp’s UK boss has talked of the importance of the channel in helping the firm to achieve its ambitions across the territory.

Chris Greenwood, UK director at NetApp, said the company had been putting investment into its partner organisation and had seen the channel get behind its strategy and deliver results.

The firm has been following a three-pronged strategy, with the first being to drive up customer flash adoption, and Greenwood stating that NetApp has been taking market share.

“We focus a lot on the competitive landscape, but I think we’ve enjoyed a three-year period of taking market share and really growing our core business in the UK and across the world as well,” he said.

Data fabric is the second area of NetApp’s strategy, and it has seen a lot of development over the past five or six years as it moved from a vision to a reality.

“From a partner perspective, what that means is that we are very focused on taking them on that journey with NetApp,” said Greenwood. “We don’t want to leave any traditional partners behind and I think that if you talk to many of them, a lot of them are evolving their business models in the same way.

“NetApp has always been a very partner-orientated technology company. The vast majority of our business passes through some form of partner, and we have always prided ourselves on being focused on building trust with our partners.”

Greenwood also pointed to the ability to support hybrid cloud as one of the most important for the vendor and its partners. “We really believe that operating between those lines between on-premise and the cloud, successful partners can build a very profitable business,” he said.

NatApp has recognised that its role is to support partners and customers that adapt their business models and investment has been put in to make sure more of the channel are in a position to support hybrid cloud.

A large plank of that has been via the partner programme, with a commitment to making life simple and profitable for those that sign up. But there has also been investment going into the UK organisation, said Greenwood.

“In the last few years, I think we’ve almost doubled the size of our partner organisation inside the UK business and we have really invested,” he said, adding that the firm had recruited staff with public cloud skills as well as the ability to help support traditional partners.

“We are working with them on proposition development and portfolio development,” he said. “So, if they are taking a product or service and offering to market, how do we help them manage that and really take that to market effectively over the next two or three years?”

NetApp is helping partners meet a lot of customer challenges with its portfolio and Greenwood said it would remain focused on growing market share with its channel.

“The UK market is a cloud-focused market and one of the top three globally, so of course NetApp is very ambitious about developing our propositions,” he added. “We are pleased with the performance, but it’s moving really quickly and the growth rates in the cloud are only going to continue.”

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