Sage’s Journey to SaaS Company Continues with Splunk, Microsoft Vet as New Channel Chief

Sage’s new VP of partners says his priority will be helping partners evolve their businesses toward SaaS and cloud.

Christine Horton, Contributing Editor

February 8, 2021

3 Min Read
SaaS Apps

Driving cloud solutions and SaaS revenues is a priority for Sage, says the software firm’s new global partner chief.

Aziz Benmalek was named EVP of Sage’s global partner organisation last month. His remit sees him helping Sage’s partners evolve their businesses toward subscription revenue models. Additionally, he will oversee the expansion of the Sage Business Cloud portfolio.


Sage’s Aziz Benmalek

Benmalek says the Sage Business Cloud Marketplace is “super critical” going forward. A web-based app, it lists resale and referral ISV partner applications that integrate with Sage cloud products.

Currently more than a third of its channel is actively partnering with customers via the marketplace. The exec’s job is to introduce the platform to new regions. He will also oversee onboarding more ISVs and app developers, and connecting them with 2 million active Sage customers.

Benmalek also highlighted the importance of partners developing their own IP.

“Adding more value, more managed services, more IP is where you unlock the value for partners. You will see more and more as we move into the cloud.

“Be it in a vertical or adding functionality to the products we have, the partner ecosystem is super strategic for growth. And even more important for the transformation, we are driving from on-prem to subscription, into cloud and SaaS.”

Updates to Enablement

Sage is Britain’s biggest listed tech company, but it doesn’t share its partner numbers. However, it has thousands of VARs worldwide as well as strategic alliances with the likes of AWS, Microsoft, Salesforce and PwC. The company also disclosed that it generates approximately 35% of its revenue from partner sales.

“The partner ecosystem with Sage from my initial view is really a vibrant one,” said Benmalek.

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Elsewhere, Benmalek confirmed there are likely future updates to certification and training to reflect its aspiration to become a global SaaS company.

“Having a way of driving the business from a certification and enablement [standpoint] is going to be important for us. You will see continued improvements around certification enablement, especially as we move into SaaS. It takes different skills and capabilities to deliver managed services for the customer in the SaaS world,” he said.

Given the current health crisis, Benmalek said that “cloud dynamics are driving a lot of value in these times.”

“It’s a time when businesses can use the cost and benefits of scale of SaaS and cloud, which is exciting. We see it with our customers, and we’ll see it even more as we increase our penetration in SaaS moving forward.”

Benmalek joined Sage from Splunk. where he was VP of worldwide indirect sales, partners and business development. He also previously spent 22 years at Microsoft in various exec roles.

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About the Author(s)

Christine Horton

Contributing Editor, Channel Futures

Christine Horton writes about all kinds of technology from a business perspective. Specializing in the IT sales channel, she is a former editor and now regular contributor to leading channel and business publications. She has a particular focus on EMEA for Channel Futures.

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