Rackspace Partner Leadership Summit: 5 Questions to Note
When the Rackspace Partner Leadership Summit kicks off this week (Oct. 5-6, San Antonio), The VAR Guy will be poking around and raising some timely questions about the Rackspace partner program — and potential recurring revenue opportunities for VARs and MSPs. In fact, here are the top five channel-related questions The VAR Guy will call on Rackspace to answer during the conference.
1. Beyond Hosted Exchange: Sure, many small businesses are outsourcing their email systems to hosted Exchange service providers. But the hosted Exchange market is very crowded, margins are thin and Microsoft itself continues to expand its Exchange Online service. With those competitive risks in mind, which SaaS offerings should VARs and MSPs explore next for their customers?
2. Open Stack: Rackspace, as you may have heard, continues to promote Open Stack as an open source cloud computing platform. In theory, Open Stack will allow large service providers to deploy technology-as-a-service on common architectures, giving customers more freedom of choice as they weigh specific service provider options. But where do smaller managed services providers and VARs fit into the Open Stack conversation? The VAR Guy will dig for answers.
3. Distribution Deal Update: Rackspace earlier this year announced a cloud partnership with Ingram Micro, the massive distributor. Plus, Rackspace is working closely with the Ingram Micro Seismic team, which focuses on recurring revenue opportunities for VARs and MSPs.
4. Team Building: The Rackspace channel team includes channel veterans from Extreme Networks and AMD. The VAR Guy wonders: Are more channel hires on the way? And if so, how will those new hires potentially help Rackspace’s channel program to evolve over the next year?
5. A SaaS Encore: When the Rackspace Partner Leadership Summit ends on Oct. 6, Rackspace will shift its focus to the Rackspace SaaS Summit (October 7). At the conference, Rackspace is expected to launch AppMatcher, “the world’s first matchmaking engine connecting specific businesses with relevant applications.” Also, the company will launch the Rackspace SaaS business unit, which will serve more than 1,000 B2B applications in the Managed Hosting division. How will partners benefit? The VAR Guy will dig for answers.
That’s all for now. If you’ve got questions about Rackspace’s channel and cloud partner strategies, feel free to post a comment or email the question directly to The VAR Guy (TheVARguy [at] NineLivesMediaInc [dot] com).