ArrowSphere Market Place: Cloud Services Aggregator?
Arrow (NYSE: ARW), the big technology distributor, has unveiled ArrowSphere — a cloud services aggregation and brokerage platform for VARs in Europe. Launched by Arrow Enterprise Computing Solutions, ArrowSphere is a cloud market place that allows European VARs to provision and manage multiple cloud services for end customers.
ArrowSphere is the latest in a growing list of cloud services aggregation platforms promoted by distributors. Alternative options include Avnet Cloud Solutions, Ingram Micro Cloud, Tech Data TDcloud and Synnex CloudSolv, among others.
ArrowSphere was announced in Paris, but chatter about it spread in the United States thanks to a tweet from Gartner VP Tiffani Bova.
Technology distributors see cloud services aggregation as a way to remain the central hub for VARs and MSPs that are extending beyond IT product sourcing to cloud services selection, activation and management for customers. Arrow claims ArrowSphere will allow channel partners to provision, report, bill and manage cloud subscriptions for customers. Moreover, resellers will be able to build web storefronts that offer white label branding of cloud services, Arrow added.
In theory, ArrowSphere and rival cloud aggregator services can transform VARs and MSPs into so-called cloud brokers that coordinate multiple services for customers.
ArrowSphere: The Big Picture
Arrow offered an ArrowSphere teaser in this video:
ArrowSphere is available to the IT community in the United Kingdom (beginning July 11) and will be available in September in Denmark, France, Germany and Spain, with other countries to follow, the company said. Talkin' Cloud does not know if/when ArrowSphere will debut in North America — but we're checking.
So far, the ArrowSphere cloud market place includes solutions from:
- BlueCoat security
- Citrix GoToMeeting, GoToTraining, GoToWebinar
- Colt cloud storage
- EMC Atmos storage
- IBM Lotus Live and SmartCloud Enterprise
- McAfee SaaS Email filtering and protection
- Mitel unified communications
- Mozy Pro Backup
- NTT Compute Cloud and Exchange services
- NetApp private cloud offerings
- OpSource cloud
- Symantec security services
- Trend Micro Worry-Free security
- VMware VM on demand
- Websense cloud email and web security
Although multiple distributors are moving into the cloud aggregator market, Ingram Micro Cloud gained first-mover advantage about 18 months to two years ago, and is now ranked among the world's top 100 cloud services providers, according to the second annual Talkin' Cloud 100 report. But it's still very early in the cloud aggregator market, and most VARs and MSPs have yet to discover the distributor-led services, Talkin' Cloud believes.