Welcome to the Cloud Partner Programs blog!
This is a forum for exploring the cloud-related programs that IBM is building for its partners. Our objective here is to have an ongoing, active dialogue about what IBM is delivering for partners and how we can continually increase our success together.
My name is Amy Anderson and I am the manager of the Emerging Technology team for IBM's ISV & Developer Relations organization. My team and I have been responsible for SaaS programs for
the last several years, and as cloud computing takes off, we are expanding our
scope to include a broader range of partners and cloud-related technologies. In 2011, we’ll be launching a new Partnerworld program for
Cloud. Partnerworld programs are designed for partners to earn points for skills and successful
product deliveries, and in exchange receive benefits from IBM.
There are several key objectives for our program. First, it is critically
important that we have one partner program for cloud computing. The last thing we want to do is to announce a disjointed set of offerings that confuse both our partners and clients and get in the way of our mutual success. A single program with multiple paths makes it much easier for partners to figure out where to start and how to fit in.
Second, cloud computing often changes the nature of how we
interact with our partners. For example,
ISVs and Systems Integrators might both deliver an asset as a cloud service, so
running separate programs for ISVs and RSIs would not be the most effective way
to on-board solutions to our cloud. The cloud program will focus on what partners want to do with cloud computing, and delivers benefits that meet those needs.
And finally, creating a single program for cloud computing
lets us fully demonstrate IBM’s value
proposition to our partners as well as our clients. As our partners have told us, the value of
working with IBM on cloud computing is both
the breadth and depth that IBM can bring to
our clients. Partners in particular
perceive that IBM has a much more complete
ecosystem for cloud than our competitors, and this is a key reason for doing
business with IBM. It is through a comprehensive program that IBM can deliver
After some detailed analysis,
we have established six paths for cloud. Each path is defined by what partners need from IBM
for cloud, not by technologies or how we traditionally classify partners. For each of these paths, we’ll have a variety
of partners who want to participate; some partners will participate in multiple
Providers. These are partners who
want to deliver their application or asset as a cloud service. Most of our existing SaaS partners will
participate in this path. Although
our main objective is to get the applications onto IBM’s
we will continue to support partners who want to use IBM
middleware on other vendor’s clouds.
Providers. These are partners who
have tools or services that improve the experience of the IBM
cloud. There is a wide variety of
tools that fall into this category, anything from virus scanning to
application enablement tools.
Technology providers have a different set of needs from application
providers, and our go to market strategies with these two partner types
will be different.
Providers. These are partners who want to build and manage a public cloud
infrastructure. This could be
anything from a PaaS provider to a partner who wants to build a public
cloud using IBM componentry—anything
from our middleware to Power systems to cloud-specific storage.
Builders. These are partners who
want to build private clouds on behalf of their clients. Typically, these are services-driven
organizations who build highly customized environments for large
Resellers. These are partners who
want to resell IBM cloud offerings. Today, the offerings available for
resellers are focused on LotusLive and TivoliLive, but the range of
offerings will no doubt expand in 2011.
Aggregators. This path has a high potential for opening entirely new markets to IBM and its partners. Aggregators are organizations who want
to bundle cloud services for their constituents, but they are not IT
organizations and are not interested in building or managing clouds. They want to provide cloud services, but
will need other organizations to provide support.
In subsequent blog posts, we'll be going through the six partner paths in more detail. Please comment and contribute as we go. Cloud computing is a dynamic and exciting area to be involved with, so I'm sure we can have a lively discussion!