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March 15, 2010
Alfresco Software, which specializes in open source enterprise content management, says it more than doubled its partner network in 2009. But here’s the really interesting part: Alfresco partners are earning $10 to $15 worth of services for every dollar of Alfresco Enterprise subscriptions sold. Here are the details.
Alfresco spent much of 2009 building a North American network of systems integrators and solutions providers. Roughly 80 companies are now part of that network, generating roughly $250 million worth of Alfresco-related services per year, Alfresco says,
Alfresco’s services revenue mirrors similar statements from Red Hat, which has openly stated that JBoss middleware integrators typically earn more than $10 in services fees for every dollar in JBoss-related sales they generate. No surprise, both Alfresco and Red Hat had prominent positions in The VAR Guy’s 2009 Open Source 50 report — which tracks the open source industry’s most popular partner programs. (The 2010 survey is ongoing now.)
Still, The VAR Guy needs to provide a reality check: For the most part, open source partner programs remain a work in progress. , Initiatives like the Open Source Channel Alliance (led by Synnex and Red Hat) and Tech Data‘s Open Tech strive to educate resellers about open source partner opportunities — but many traditional resellers lack application-level expertise and haven’t taken the open source plunge just yet.
Even so, Alfreco’s partner program shows particular promise. The company says additional milestones include:
The expansion of the Alfresco partner program for original equipment manufacturers (OEM), with the addition of more than 20 OEM partners in 2009;
Launch of Alfresco’s Partner Solution Showcase, an online content application resource that enables partners to promote solutions built with Alfresco; and,
The expansion of its North and South American partner program for system integrators (SI).
True believers include Acquity Group, which has won several Fortune 500 engagements involving Alfresco’s softeware; Micro Strategies Inc., which develops Alfresco-to-Oracle software integrations; and Clazics, a training partner that helped Alfresco to lift its North American training revenue 71 percent in 2009 vs. 2008.
Will more partners jump on the Alfresco bandwagon? Let’s be careful of the hype. When it comes to open source, many VARs have yet to push beyond Linux…
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