IT and Business Insights for SMB Solution Providers

Schneider Electric Launches Cloud Solution Resale Program

The power management vendor’s new APC Technology Partners Initiative lets channel pros offer unified threat management solutions from Untangle, BDR software from Infrascale, and 4G/LTE failover services from Accelerated Concepts Inc. at top-tier discounts. By Rich Freeman

Power management vendor Schneider Electric has rolled out a new offering that allows its partners to resell subscription-priced solutions from Untangle Inc., Infrascale Inc., and Accelerated Concepts Inc. to their SMB customers.

Called the APC Technology Partners Initiative, the new program is available in the U.S., U.K., Germany, and France at present, with other countries to follow. It allows APC partner in those geographies to procure unified threat management solutions from San Jose, Calif.-based Untangle, BDR software from El Segundo, Calif.-based Infrascale, and 4G/LTE network failover services from Tampa, Fla.-based Accelerated Concepts at the same discounted rates paid by those vendors’ top-tier partners.

“We’re giving our partners the ability to make the highest margins,” says Ray Munkelwitz, offer management director for Schneider Electric’s IT division.

Like Schneider Electric’s own UPS and PDU hardware, he continues, all three solutions are designed to preserve uptime, making them logical extensions of the Schneider Electric portfolio. “These are things that complement our overall mission to provide high-network availability and certainty in a connected world,” Munkelwitz says.

They’re also logical extensions of the products currently sold by Schneider Electric’s power and physical infrastructure partners. Such companies are looking for new sources of revenue as businesses steadily migrate workloads offsite. “The cloud really has disrupted a lot of what we would consider our traditional core business,” Munkelwitz says. “Much like us, I think our partners are looking for different ways to increase their offer and their value to their users. A lot of that occurs in the as-a-service type market.”

Channel pros who already offer security, BDR, and failover services to their clients can benefit from the APC Technology Partners program as well, Munkelwitz says, through its favorable pricing.

Schneider Electric selected Untangle, Infrascale, and Accelerated Concepts based on input from partners and analysts as well as its own market research. It also carefully vetted all of the solutions involved for ease of use.

“We wanted to make sure that our customers had a very great customer experience in using the products, not only from an installation perspective, but also in terms of a user interface,” says Bill Manning, vice president of new business development at Schneider Electric. “All of these products have cloud-based monitoring and management software associated with them. We wanted to make sure it was very simple and easy to get up and running.”

Officially unveiled last week, the new program has been under development most of this year. Schneider Electric has been unobtrusively introducing it to partners over the last several months.

Partners can acquire solutions in the program through leading distributors, as well as directly from Schneider Electric itself in some cases.

According to Manning, Schneider Electric may add further APC Technology Partners in other business continuity-related markets. The company plans to work with a single provider of choice in each product category it supports, however.

Cloud computing’s relentless erosion of data center hardware deployments has power specialists like Schneider Electric seeking new sources of income and new ways to remain relevant to their partners. The Raleigh, N.C.-based power quality division of Eaton Corp., for example, is cultivating leadership in software and services.

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