Westcon-Comstor cuts ribbon on Cloud & Collaboration business division

Distributor reacts to market needs with a dedicated focus in areas where channel partners should be able to reap the rewards

Westcon-Comstor has cut the ribbon on a Cloud & Collaboration business division to tap into an area of the market that is expected to grow significantly over the next few years.

The distributor revealed that it was setting up a new division in July, after announcing that Anthony Byford was moving into a role as vice-president in a newly formed cloud collaboration business division, leaving a UK and Ireland managing director vacancy that was being filled by John Nolan.

The aim of the new division is to bring together specialists and enablers to make sure partners and vendors can get high levels of support.

The decision behind the timing of the launch is a reaction to market dynamics, with the distributor sharing research from Cavell Group which forecasts that by 2024, the total market value of cloud communications will exceed £1.9bn in just the UK.

Some of the vendors represented by the division include 8x8, Avaya, Jabra, Microsoft, Mitel, Poly, Ringcentral and Spectralink.

“With the economy shifting to subscription models, and our vendors to recurring revenues, it became clear that we needed to change the way we work in this space,” said René Klein, executive vice-president for Westcon Europe.

“Cloud technology is in high demand, even more so thanks to the hybrid work evolution. By reinventing how we work with this particular vendor community, we’ll improve our support to partners and ensure their success.”

Fresh division

Keith Jackson, vice-president of international channels at 8x8, shared a vendor reaction, giving support for the move by the distributor to set up a fresh division.

“8x8 spent a lot of time looking for a true value-added distribution partner that could help us not only expand our footprint in the UK, but also help us with our expansion into Europe,” he said. “We’re truly excited about the dedicated focus of Westcon-Comstor’s new Cloud & Collaboration division and are excited to see how it grows.”

The division is not just about making vendors happy. The aim is to also increase the guidance it can offer resellers and MSPs.

“The vendor landscape is complex, but we can help our partners succeed through integrations and synergies, helping them navigate ecosystems,” said Antony Byford, vice-president at Cloud & Collaboration.

“Partners need support operating within this new model; they’re hungry for the skills needed to take these new offers to market,” he added.

“They now need to manage their businesses differently thanks to the introduction of cloud billing systems and automation. Vendors need the channel community to help support their accelerated drive to these models and Westcon-Comstor is here to facilitate this. That’s the rationale for the new division – and I’m thrilled to be at the helm to lead it.”

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