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French IT monitoring specialist Centreon has restated its ambition to significantly grow its UK channel base over the next 12 months.
The firm appointed Juan Lyall as UK and Ireland country manager in October 2020 to drive its partner and managed service provider-first strategy, following that up with a decision to go channel-first as it recognised the growth benefits that would come from embracing the indirect model.
Lyall has been clear since he arrived that the firm is in aggressive channel growth mode. The UK business has been actively getting its brand and proposition out there, reaching out to partners at the recent AWS UK Summit. The firm managed to connect with hundreds of prospective partners during the event and hopes to continue to build on that momentum.
Lyall said it was aware it would be a challenge, but it felt that it could increase its channel by 300% in the next 12 months.
“Centreon has been extremely successful in France but, as with many companies, we are shifting from a mixture of direct and channel to pure channel. In international and new markets, we have the advantage of starting from scratch – well almost. As a result, we are pushing significant resource (all within context) towards driving channel engagement and channel success,” he said.
“Global channel marketing is based out of the UK, our new field marketing hire is based out of the UK, and we have invested a not insignificant amount of money in a new CRM [customer relationship management] connector to enable partners to quickly and easily build programmes, get information, receive leads, etc,” he added.
Lyall said that in the time since he arrived and the firm’s decision to go indirect, Centreon had been making a lot of investments to support its channel ambitions.
“Centreon is focused on driving lead-gen programmes and feeding leads directly to the channel. We have embraced the need to build both demand as well as channel engagement. It isn’t an easy process, but we are committed to helping prospective partners recognise the financial opportunities that working with us can bring. We also make it as easy as possible for them to work with us,” he said.
The target of 300% growth from partners is one that would cause anxiety for any channel manager, but Lyall claimed it was achievable.
“300% is not simply about growing the number of partners. Of course, we want to work with more partners, but we are focused on growing partner business – enabling them to build either Centreon-managed or professional services businesses, so they can be more effective and so more profitable. That, in turn, will allow us to sell more licences,” he said.