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February 10, 2010
For all you Apple partners out there, or maybe those thinking about becoming one; here’s an interesting tidbit from ARNnet.com.au. The Apple channel partner network is launching down-under. Here’s the news…
Apple is looking to funnel corporate business opportunities back into the channel with the official “Apple Consultant Network” (ACN). It already has a presence in North America but now Cupertino is getting down with the resellers down-under by coming to Australia.
ACN is made up of certified resellers and it partners, who include Computers Now, Digistor, gizmo, Key Options Technology and Winthrop, among others that ARNnet.com.au has noted.
The bigger reason this is news is that, traditionally, the lack of an official reseller program has caused a bit of undercutting and unnecessarily aggressive strategy in the Australian market. Apple had worked with partners on a “ad-hoc basis” which caused the chaos. Now, with Apple behind the program, they can calm the ‘turbulence’ flowing through the channel (so to speak). Resellers can work around each other and not step on toes. Apple can help delegate regions based on business needs and location.
Even with Apple sanctioned resellings, there’s still some interesting hiccups. For example, the iPhone is not included in the channel reselling programs, and there’s still no strategy for the iPad.
At the end of the day, the general consensus is that it’s another way for Apple to get into the enterprise space, despite some criticism that Apple’s sales were too direct (not a channel player.) According to ARNnet.com.au…
Winthrop general manager, Cedric Celestine… is expecting the new network will help boost its Apple business by 20-30 per cent. Perth-based IT service provider [and reseller] Kytec, saw the new program as a win-win for both vendor and partners.
I suspect there’s a trend here of Apple looking to nose into the vertical and the enterprise-level more and more. But we’ll have to wait and see. We’ll be on the lookout, though, especially with the iPad’s potential looming.
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