3DG Partners' co-founders are bringing their unique backgrounds in technology to fill a huge gap at the customer level.

James Anderson, Senior News Editor

March 13, 2024

3 Min Read
TA 101 Rising Star

CHANNEL PARTNERS CONFERENCE & EXPO — Channel Futures on Wednesday honored Doug Cardozo and Guhan Raghu of 3DG Partners as its first-ever Technology Advisor 101 Rising Star winners.

The Technology Advisor 101 (TA 101) recognizes influential and top-performing business leaders in the agent partner model. The second installment of the awards program has added distinctions for Rising Star and Lifetime Achievement honorees. Cardozo and Raghu, 3DG's co-founders, received the Rising Star distinction.

Channel Futures honored Raghu and Cardozo in a keynote session Wednesday afternoon at the Channel Partners Conference & Expo. Greg Praske, the TA 101 Lifetime Achievement winner, also spoke.

TA 101 Rising Stars

A jury of supplier, distributor and partner leaders helped Channel Futures select the two TA 101 Rising Stars. The Rising Star award recognizes fresh thinking and exceptional business performance by people who have worked at a channel partner organization for less than 10 years.

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Guhan and Cardozo are less than two years into their channel tenure, but they're already off to a strong start. A deal worth more than $3 million in monthly recurring revenue – the largest deal in the agent model ever publicized – evidences their success.

While the deal was career-changing for Cardozo and Raghu, they view it as a sign of their business model's success. Their focus, they say, is not to represent and sell a specific product or vendor, but to deliver a set of IT advisory services and consulting that spans the whole IT stack.

Related:Best Technology Consultants 2024: Top 101 Agents & Advisors Ranked (A-K)

"We just recognized a gap in some of the traditional VARs’ and even the traditional suppliers’ ability to represent the end-to-end life cycle of these technology solutions," Cardozo told Channel Futures.

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3DG Partners: A New Perspective

The vast majority of partners that sell in the agent/advisor model claim roots in telecom. Many technology advisor leaders initially worked in sales at a network services carrier before striking out on their own as a vendor-agnostic broker.

But Cardozo and Raghu hold no such roots.

Raghu is an internal IT leader himself, having served as a chief information officer for multiple companies. He uses his experiences on the customer side of the channel to offer consulting to IT decision-makers.

"I haven't been very product-specific in my past. I've been more focused on how I solve a business problem with technology solutions, and the solution could be a compilation of multiple things," Raghu told Channel Futures.

Cardozo comes from the VAR and vendor side of the channel, having sold hardware and software solutions to business customers. Spending the earlier parts of his career working alongside large OEMs like Cisco showed Cardozo a gap he felt 3DG could fill.

Related:Best Technology Consultants 2024: Top 101 Agents & Advisors Ranked (L-Z)

"At a traditional reseller or even at a supplier like Cisco, you might be talking about SD-WAN and the cost of the hardware or the licensing, but you might not be talking about everything that surrounds that project," Cardozo told Channel Futures. "What about the connectivity that connects to SD-WAN? What about DDoS protection for that connectivity? What about the telecom expense management to monitor that connectivity going forward?"

Many agents prefer to stick with selling the connectivity, for which they can earn residual commissions from carriers. But 3DG Partners has built out its own referral channel with VARs and other hardware providers that can collectively aid the end user in building a full-stack solution.

"We are essentially creating our own channel where we now have suppliers and traditional VARs and some of these types of people referring business back to us to increase their relevancy with their clients to help them represent the true end-to-end life cycle of the technology," Cardozo said.

Cardozo and Raghu tell Channel Futures that they're excited about the value they can provide to clients going forward. Their consulting projects will occasionally present an opportunity for pull-through revenue on a technology sale, but they say they are more excited about long-lasting, wide-ranging projects they're getting into with IT leaders.

Related:2024 TA 101 Lifetime Achievement Winner: Greg Praske

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AgentsTA 101

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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