Tech Data is readying a collection of “ready to deploy” solutions in strategic, next-generation technology markets.
Already available on a limited basis, the new “plug and play” offerings include pre-integrated hardware and software, a validated reference architecture, detailed deployment instructions, and associated sales and marketing materials. The goal is to help channel pros get in on skyrocketing demand for security, cloud, and Internet of Things solutions more quickly and profitably, according to Sergio Farache, Tech Data’s executive vice president of strategy, innovation, and next-gen technology.
“These three categories are the hyper-growth categories,” he says.
Tech Data will roll out six to seven solutions per quarter starting in its fiscal Q3, which begins next month.
The new portfolio was inspired by the “click-to-run” cloud solutions the company began shipping in 2019. Like those systems, ready to deploy solutions combine all of the technologies needed to meet a specific customer requirement in a pre-assembled package. The use cases that ready to deploy solutions address, however, require hardware and services in addition to software.
“With an IoT solution, you need in some way to deploy the sensors. You need to connect the sensors to your gateway, and then transfer the data to a central point where that data will be analyzed,” Farache says, noting that such tasks can’t be performed by an automated click-to-run process.
The step-by-step implementation instructions Tech Data provides with ready to deploy solutions are designed to enable partners new to a given technology complete the services portion of a project on their own. Partners can outsource that work to Tech Data on a white-label basis as well.
“We’ll never go direct to a user. We always are supporting the partner,” Farache says.
Pricing on the solutions is often the same as what partners would pay to buy the hardware and software components alone. “In some cases, this is part of the value add that we offer as a company,” Farache says. “There are cases that are a little more complex and can be fees associated with the access to either the solution or the integration.”
Utilizing ready to deploy solutions offers three key advantages for partners, according to Farache. For one, it helps companies bridge the gap between the skills they have and the skills they need to enter fields like smart building technology and industrial automation.
“Not all the partners have capabilities in all areas,” Farache observes.
Drawing on proven, pre-assembled designs enables partners to get new solutions to market faster and with less risk as well, he adds. “If you do it by yourself you need to go through the learning curve,” Farache says.
Reselling pre-built solutions saves money too, he continues. “Instead of investing all those engineer hours on your side, you reduce that and focus on what you do well.”
In March, Tech Data and competitor SYNNEX announced their intention to merge in a deal valued at $7.2 billion. SYNNEX shareholders approved that transaction two weeks ago.