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Acer America
Acer America Corp. is a computer manufacturer of business and consumer PCs, notebooks, ultrabooks, projectors, servers, and storage products.

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333 West San Carlos Street
San Jose, California 95110
United States

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April 18, 2024 |

How Channel Program’s Strategic Expansion Will Empower MSPs ‘Like Never Before’

“We offer a single pane of glass for vendor relationships.”

Channel Program has found a new way to add even more value to its purpose-built marketplace that connects IT services providers and vendors.

Kevin Lancaster of Channel Program

Kevin Lancaster

In fact, the channel’s service company is “empowering MSPs to evaluate vendor solutions and manage their vendor ecosystems like never before.” CEO and Co-founder Kevin Lancaster and Matt Solomon, chief business development officer and co-founder, shared with ChannelPro an update and plans following Channel Program’s latest acquisitions.

Channel Program acquired RocketMSP in January, followed by CyberSells in February. Lancaster, who referred to Channel Program as the bridge between MSPs and vendors, said CyberSells and RocketMSP had a history of success in the channel, but realized vendor and product stack management meant spreadsheets for 95% of MSPs. “We offer a single pane of glass for vendor relationships,” he added. Details include vendors used, their monthly and annual expenses, and renewal details.

Joining Forces to Offer Support to MSPs

Kurt Rinear of CTTS

Kurt Rinear

Despite some overlap between offerings from Channel Program and channel associations, there’s a strong focus on the complex MSP relationship to vendors. That offers huge value to MSPs, said Kurt Rinear, CTO of CTTS, an MSP with 13 employees just north of Austin, TX. “We’re like the red-headed stepchildren of IT. Channel Program filled a good niche to help the channel grow and get more revenue. Its Navistack visual tool shows us where we have gaps in our product stack and helps us find vendors to fill those gaps.”

RocketMSP offers “great content for MSPs,” including thought leadership content, product reviews, and interviews of vendors answering “tough questions,” Solomon said. He and Lancaster plan to use the new content, including live demos and KPI videos, to help connect MSPs and vendors with new products and services.

Meanwhile, CyberSells offers sales strategies and services for tech companies and MSPs, including lead generation and sales messaging and scripting. Rinear said his MSP has some challenges on the sales side, so he has reached out to CyberSells already after the Channel Program acquisition. “They picked up a program to address one of our needs,” he added.

Investment for the Future

Looking ahead, Channel Program is working to support the MSP of 2030 with multiple updates.

First, NaviStack Contract Management rolled out in late January, adding better support for vendor contracts, including ability to add visual contract tracking on your calendar, easily access contract details, and set reminders when you find them most convenient. You can add start date, expiration, initial payment dates, renewal data, and even auto-renew to all contracts, including total costs for all vendors. It’s also easier to add or remove vendors from your stack.

Matt Solomon of Channel Program

Matt Solomon

In March of this year, Channel Program revamped the NaviStack interface and added functionality, including the Distributor Marketplace. “We work with dozens and dozens of distributors, and each has hundreds of vendors they work with,” said Lancaster. “Also, MSPs are moving upstream into reselling tech, there’s explosive growth in endpoints, and many MSPs are moving up to midmarket customers,” so they need more options — including new distributors.

When logging in, distributors now find streamlined options for quick actions, including more information about Channel Program, support requests, and maintaining vendor account visibility. Distributors also gain insights with the “Add to Stack” process for MSPs that can now show which products were bought through a distributor to improve transparency.

According to Lancaster, Channel Program will continue to invest in tools to make managing software easier for MSPs. “We’re in a complex industry which will grow increasingly complex. Our job is to simplify that complexity.”

Solomon added, “Tech won’t slow down, and we’ll continue to evolve as the gray areas between tech categories increase. It’s our job to stay on top of this, and our mission is to make this easy for everybody.”


Image: iStock


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