Call it a teaser or a cliff hanger: Tigerpaw Software, the PSA (professional services automation) specialist, is striving to reach out to more than 1,000 telecommunications vendors across North America. Publicly disclosed details about the effort remain vague at best -- though it sounds like Tigerpaw will share more partner news in Q2 2011.
First, a little background: Tigerpaw President James Foxall had discussed the convergence of telecom and the IT channel during the Tigerpaw User Conference in October 2010. On the one hand, it sounds like Tigerpaw has a rich history in the telecom reseller market. On the other hand, PSA rivals Autotask and ConnectWise also have growing VoIP expertise:
- Autotask's VARStreet acquisition in 2010 allows VARs to source a range of IT products -- including VoIP equipment -- from multiple distributors and channel suppliers.
- Meanwhile, CharTec -- a 2010 ConnectWise Capital investment -- has VoIP expertise, though CharTec's primary efforts involve Hardware as a Service and BDR (backup and disaster recovery).
- Plus, there are signs that Cisco is developing a unified communications dashboard -- code-named Thunderbolt -- that may plug into third-party MSP software platforms. Both Autotask and ConnectWise have spent considerable time with Cisco-centric channel partners over the past year or two.
Like I said: Foxall's statement is pretty generic. But the bottom of the Tigerpaw press release also mentioned the following cliff-hanger: "The company also plans to announce aggressive joint value propositions with multiple partner vendors that hit the market space in Q2 of 2011."
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