Cloud Backup Provider Intronis Develops New Tools for Partner Success

White labeling, best practices training, and customized onboarding are designed to help VARs and MSPs boost their businesses. By Colleen Frye

Intronis co-founder neal Bradbury stepped back into the channel program he created in 2008 when he assumed the vice president of channel development role in December 2012. The goals for the channel program in 2013, he says, are focused on MSP and VAR business success and the onboarding program.

Founded in 2003, Chelmsford, Mass.-based Intronis Inc. is a provider of cloud backup solutions for the IT channel. In April, Intronis appointed Rick Faulk as the company's new CEO.

Since establishing its channel program, the company “hasn't looked back,” Bradbury emphasizes, and today is 100 percent channel driven. “We originally sold direct, but we were trying to sell IT services to SMBs, and they had that trusted relationship with their channel partners. Our program today is based on a lot of feedback from partners along the way.”

Bradbury has held a variety of leadership roles at the company, including partner support, product management, and most recently operations. “It was exciting to go back to the channel after 10 years. I understand the needs of the channel partner, and it's fun for me to see what we've built over the past 10 years.”

This year the focus is helping partners be more successful and teaching them best practices for selling business availability solutions, he says. “We're giving them marketing solutions and sales assistance.”

In addition, he says, “We have identified the different roles in a partner organization and we're giving them customized training.” For example, as part of onboarding a new partner, Intronis provides specialized training specific to the business owner, salespeople, and technicians. It offers self-training and self-study options, with training materials and videos available via the partner portal.

PROGRAM SPECIFICS AND MARGINS
The company today has 2,000-plus channel partners in its Intronis Volume Partner Program. Bradbury says there is currently no tiering in the program. “We treat everyone as equal. Tiering from our perspective is the size of the commitment. The more block storage you buy, the better pricing you get and the better margins.”

Intronis' partner program includes SPIFs, rebates, discount promotions, qualified leads, sales and innovation awards, and rewards and incentives programs. Bradbury says the company currently does not offer certifications, but that is under consideration for the future.

The key differentiators Bradbury stresses to partners are “we're channel only, partners can white label our product, and we have awesome technical support and training.” And, he adds, since a lot of partners use PSA solutions like ConnectWise and RMM software such as Level Platforms, “our integrations with those applications are true differentiators for us because we're integrated with tools [partners] use to manage their business.”

Going forward, Bradbury says the company will be giving channel partners more growth opportunities by enhancing its current product. In June, Intronis expanded its support for virtualized environments with its Spring Release '13. A new feature, the QuickSpin data recovery tool, offers advanced data restore and localized recovery support for virtualized machines.

Spring Release '13 also includes an enhanced Intronis partner portal and the Branding Wizard, a new marketing and enablement tool that lets Intronis partners quickly create a customer-facing portal featuring their own logo, colors, and specific information.

Further, Bradbury says the company has invested in a new data center in Montreal to ensure that channel partners in Canada can comply with the country's federal and provincial regulations.

Also new, an enhanced Partner Trial is available for interested channel partners to test-drive the Intronis BDR solution and partner enablement support with no cost and no obligation.