One MSO recently landed a record-setting deal.

James Anderson, Senior News Editor

May 2, 2023

11 Slides

CHANNEL PARTNERS CONFERENCE AND EXPO — Cable companies and their partners are eyeing new opportunities with larger customers and new technology solutions.

Multiple-system operators (MSOs) gathered at the Channel Partners Conference and Expo Monday night to celebrate some of their latest wins. Suppliers, tech services distributors (TSDs) and technology advisors (sales agents) attended the event.

Some channel leaders at cablecos point out that these providers have expanded their portfolios beyond landline broadband. For example, Cox Business has acquired both RapidScale and Logicworks to bolster its cloud managed services. And Comcast Business‘ purchase of Masergy is an example of a company expanding both its geographical footprint and its service portfolio.

John Muscarella, vice president of channel sales at Cox Business, agreed that the cablecos have moved beyond the stereotypes associated with them.

“A lot of people look at us and think, ‘Well, you’re a regional cable provider,'” Muscarella told Channel Futures. “In reality we’re not. We’re national with international flair now in both connectivity and cloud services.”

Cablecos have historically operated on friendly terms with one another in the channel, owing to the fact that they tend to operate in different geographies. And despite more MSOs framing themselves as national or even international providers, Muscarella said the friendliness will continue.

“There’s a lot of participation together at events like this because together provide a better overall experience for these business owners to solve their customers’ problems,” he said.John-Muscarella.jpg

On the other hand, Muscarella said carrier aggregators may see increased competition from these expanded MSOs.

“You’re going see a lot of contraction in the aggregation space because of what the MSOs are doing, in building out this bigger footprint. Because it’s not based on connectivity. It’s based on cloud services,” he said.

Channel Integration

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Comcast’s Craig Schlagbaum

Comcast Business recently worked with 3DG Partners, a recently launched, Texas-based technology advisor, to land one of the largest agent-led deals in the vendor’s history. They worked to provide a solution for a nationwide retail chain. The client had primarily been using cellular connectivity for its sites. But now it’s moving to primarily managed broadband in order to expand its Wi-Fi coverage and support.

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3DG Partners’ Guhan Raghu

“This solution provides budget predictability for the customer around support, improved retail location support and coverage and a strong and required foundation for their upcoming tech initiatives,” 3DG Partners executive advisor Guhan Raghu said.

And that channel-integrated deal represents a growing trend, according to Craig Schlagbaum, senior vice president of indirect channels at Comcast Business.

“We’re doing a lot more of that now than we’ve ever done in history. And it’s proving to be very successful. It’s a good thing when the channel is no longer viewed as the competitor or the enemy. The channel is viewed as an ally, and a new way to go to market that adds value so that the both parties can win,” Schlagbaum told Channel Futures.

Channel Futures visited the Cable VIP Reception to snap photos of the partners, distributors and suppliers in attendance.

See pictures of them in the 12 slides above.

Want to contact the author directly about this story? Have ideas for a follow-up article? Email James Anderson or connect with him on LinkedIn.

 

 

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About the Author(s)

James Anderson

Senior News Editor, Channel Futures

James Anderson is a news editor for Channel Futures. He interned with Informa while working toward his degree in journalism from Arizona State University, then joined the company after graduating. He writes about SD-WAN, telecom and cablecos, technology services distributors and carriers. He has served as a moderator for multiple panels at Channel Partners events.

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