Novell’s New Channel Chief: Building Open Source Bridges?
Javier Colado, Novell's new channel chief (pictured), faces some clear challenges. Many pundits say Colado has to strengthen Novell's SUSE Linux partner ranks. But in reality, The VAR Guy believes, Colado has to build a bridge between vastly different software islands. Here's why.
Javier Colado, Novell’s new channel chief (pictured), faces some clear challenges. Many pundits say Colado has to strengthen Novell’s SUSE Linux partner ranks. But in reality, The VAR Guy believes, Colado has to build a bridge between vastly different software islands. Here’s why.
Sure, you know Novell has been gaining some momentum with SUSE Linux and the company has recruited more than 2,000 ISVs (independent software vendors) to back SUSE Linux. And that momentum will continue this week when Novell participates in Lenovo’s first server announcements at Interop.
Now, the challenges. Novell also offers identity management, security, systems management, collaboration and virtualization software. It’s clear how certain components — such as virtualization and Linux — complement each other. But Novell must find a way to cross-train and certify the bulk of its partners across all of those product sets.
Rival Red Hat has found a successful one-two punch with open source operating systems (Linux) and open source middleware (JBoss). Yes, Red Hat stumbled quite a bit initially after acquiring JBoss, but recent quarterly results suggest the JBoss acquisition is now paying dividends.
How does that compare at Novell? Chief Marketing Officer John Dragoon says the goal is to make SUSE Linux the most manageable, scalable, reliable platform to the desktop to the data center. Verbally, he connects the dots between Novell’s disparate products. And he notes that Novell’s security and identity management sales have been strong.
But The VAR Guy wonders: How many Novell solutions providers can build bridges between SUSE Linux, identity and security management, systems management, collaboration and virtualization?Until those individual products come together as true solutions, the Novell “whole” will remain weaker than its parts.
CEO’s Right-Hand Man
Colado, named to the channel chief position on Sept. 12, reports directly to CEO Ron Hovsepian — meaning that channel sales are a strategic priority within Novell’s executives ranks. According to a Novell statement:
Since 2006 Colado has served as Novell area general manager and vice president for western Europe, Middle East, and Africa where he was responsible for all operations, sales and marketing. Prior to Novell, Colado held senior executive positions with McAfee and Lucent Technologies, where he helped spearhead business partner and channel strategy and sales.
Now it’s up to Colado to tell partners how Novell’s various products fit together.