IT and Business Insights for SMB Solution Providers

What’s Up This Week: February 1-5

Our weekly preview of this week’s top stories in the SMB channel. By Rich Freeman

Peer group get-togethers, corporate makeovers, and Super Bowl mania are just a few of the topics that will dominate the SMB channel agenda over the next five days.

Monday, February 1st

  • StorageCraft announces a new sales promotion for one of its products.

Reader ROI: We're not permitted to say much more than that right now, but come back to in a few hours for the complete scoop.

  • Channel membership organization SMB Nation launches a new and improved edition of its website. Stay tuned to ChannelPro for more coverage and an update on other changes involving SMB Nation and its founder, ChannelPro 20/20 Visionary Harry Brelsford.

Reader ROI: The new site provides targeted content for both channel newcomers looking to “start up” a business and channel veterans looking to “start over” in an IT market less vulnerable to cloud computing’s downward pressure on revenue and profits. According to Brelsford, anyone not doing one or the other at present is in for trouble soon.

Reader ROI: If you belong to an HTG Peer Group, you don’t need us to tell you why these quarterly meetings are a must-attend landmark on so many travel calendars. Members who discuss these conferences with ChannelPro almost universally describe them as indispensable.

Reader ROI: Currently in the midst of a challenging transition from traditional lines of business to new ones suitable for the era of cloud computing, mobility, and big data, IBM reported a 17 percent year-over-year earnings drop in its most recent quarterly report. Connect attendees should listen closely for concrete guidance from Big Blue on how its recent acquisitions of Gravitant, Ustream, and other cloud-powered businesses fit into its long-term vision and—more importantly—how soon the company expects to turn that vision into reality.

  • AlphabetGoogle, er, make that Alphabet, issues its latest quarterly financials, the first to include separate results for each of its eight divisions.

Reader ROI: For investors, today’s report will offer a revealing look at the extent to which the Google division, which includes Alphabet’s search, mobility, app, and YouTube businesses, is keeping the company’s other “moonshot” ventures afloat. It will also show whether Alphabet has surpassed Apple as the world’s most valuable company.

Tuesday, February 2nd

  • Be on the lookout for word of a new product release from BDR vendor Arcserve.

Reader ROI: Stay tuned to ChannelPro for the still closely-guarded details.

  • Artisan InfrastructureCloud services and business continuity vendor Artisan Infrastructure launches its new Neverfail HybriStor physical and virtual data protection appliances, which are designed to offer multi-location businesses a fast, efficient, and cost-effective backup option. Like all Artisan Infrastructure solutions, it will be sold exclusively through the channel.

Reader ROI: The system looks to be targeted more at large organizations than small ones, but channel pros with multi-office midsize customers should check it out.

Wednesday, February 3rd

  • Another day, another interesting and currently top secret new product announcement, this time from security hardware and software maker Check Point.

Reader ROI: ChannelPro will get you the complete lowdown on the new offering as soon as Check Point goes public with details.

  • Eaton Intelligent Power ManagerEaton Corporation posts its first quarterly report since disclosing a one percent dip in revenues three months ago.

Reader ROI: As businesses steadily shift workloads from server closets and private data centers to public cloud environments, demand for UPS and power distribution hardware has been slipping of late. In response, Eaton plans to use power quality software and services to help its channel partners create new revenue streams. Today’s report and press conference should offer further information about the nature and timing of that course change.

Thursday, February 4th

Reader ROI: With the Veritas transaction behind it, Symantec can now devote 100 percent of its attention to security. Its partners should get their first look at what that means for the company’s future today.

Friday, February 5th

  • Cam Newton, smilingThe final 48-hour countdown to Super Bowl 50 in Santa Clara, California, commences.

Reader ROI: If you don’t much care whether the Carolina Panthers or Denver Broncos emerge victorious, you can keep things interesting anyway by getting in on one of the hundreds of prop bets available on gambling websites, like whether the opening coin toss will be heads or tails (after careful mathematical analysis, oddsmakers have decided it’s a 50-50 chance either way) and how many minutes of the CBS broadcast will feature the smiling face of Panthers QB Cam Newton (the over/under is set at three minutes, 15 seconds).

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