Tech Data TDCloud: 500 VARs Set for Distributor Cloud Update
Tech Data (NASDAQ: TECD) is set to discuss its TDCloud strategy at a major channel partner gathering next week (Fall Channel Link, Sept. 19-21, Orlando). TDCloud allows VARs and MSPs to source third-party cloud solutions from Tech Data but I don’t know how many resellers currently use the service.
Tech Data and many of its rivals have been building so-called cloud aggregator services or cloud-centric solutions for channel partners. Key examples include Ingram Micro Cloud, Synnex CloudSolv and Avnet Cloud Solutions.
Launched a year ago, TDCloud is now a Tech Data business unit. Stacy Nethercoat, VP of software and cloud services, has been closely involved with the TDCloud effort. And Bharath Natarajan is director of TDCloud and software services. Early TDCloud partners include CA Technologies, Hewlett-Packard, IBM, Symantec, VMware and Intermedia. It’s a safe bet TDCloud will earn a spotlight at Fall Channel Link, which is expected to attract more than 500 resellers.
The Business Case
So why would a VAR or MSP embrace TDCloud and/or other cloud aggregator services? The rather simple answer comes from Gartner. It’s certainly easy for channel partners to source solutions — like storage, hosted email or hosted security — directly from cloud services providers (CSPs). But once the VAR or MSP strives to manage three or more cloud services for end customers the process can become overwhelming.
Indeed, many channel partners want a single, centralized way to manage cloud provisioning, pricing and end-customer billing. The idea is to give VARs and MSPs a single portal for managing a portfolio of cloud services for end-customers. At the same time, channel partners can continue to work with the distributor to promote on-premises IT upgrades. (Listen for TDPrioritySMB and TDMobility updates at the conference as well.)
Still, many cloud aggregator services are in their infancy. Ingram Micro Cloud has been around for about two years, but didn’t really become an active live service until around a year ago. And TDCloud, meanwhile, has been more of a testbed the past year rather than a full-blown solution for partners.
How is TDCloud evolving now that it’s a business unit of Tech Data? Natarajan provided some clues in this blog post. Talkin’ Cloud will provide updated perspectives from Fall Channel Link next week.