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Posted by Tirthankar Sen on August 7, 2012
Brocade held its Asia Pacific (AP) Partners Summit 2012 last week in the capital of China’s Yunnan Province, Kunming. For a company which has been the subject of perennial takeover rumors, I was interested to know if it had anything new to convey to its partners. I was also looking forward to meeting Regan McGrath, Brocade’s newly appointed VP for Global Channel Sales and Marketing and Charlie Foo, Brocade’sVP for the Asia Pacific region.
Brocade emphasized three key target areas for innovation and investment:
Based on his background as head of the Americas sales territory for over 6 years prior to his current role, Regan is focused on making Brocade more selective in recruiting partners. He stressed the need for a globally-consistent channel program with flexibility at the local level – a requirement I discuss in my report titled, Asia’s Channel Localization Imperative. He also stressed the need to focus investments on training and education, demo and test equipment, and dedicated funded heads for its partners.
Brocade currently has 500+ partners in AP (predominantly focusing on its IP business) responsible for 95% of its total regional business. In February 2012, Brocade opened its new Regional Briefing Center in Singapore and more recently a new head office for Australia, which will double up as a demo, testing, and training facility for partners and customers. In addition to these improved partner support facilities, Brocade has also announced partner-related innovation initiatives that they recently launched or plans to roll out over the next 6 months, including:
Brocade presented a number of product innovations that I believe will help the company arm partners with the necessary tools to boost sales and profitability. However, I believe it needs to look harder at investments to build its services portfolio, which can help increase the margins of its partners.
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