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Extreme mid-sized enterprise push

01 Dec 2011

The company, which has been in New Zealand for more than 12 years, is well known at the carrier and service provider level, and James Owens, Extreme Networks regional director for Australia and New Zealand, says while its resellers working in the mid-sized space ‘have done a very good job’, now is the time to expand even further. The company has doubled its reseller base in New Zealand in the past year to 10, ranging from IBM and Ericsson to SMB specialists and specific point solution providers. "We’re looking at certain verticals and how to address those. There are new potential partners emerging in the data centre components. Most resellers are doing that as an extension of their business at the moment, but as revenue grows we will see some specialists coming out, we’re talking hosting, managed services, and now cloud.” The company has seen New Zealand revenue ‘at least double’ in the past year, Owens says. "And we’ve got very aggressive goals going forward. This is a very important territory for us.” Owens attributes the growth to the country’s advanced adoption of data centres and our sustainability push. "For a number of years New Zealand has been a leader in sustainability. It’s a core part of the decision making process for many New Zealand businesses, and our products play to that.” Owens says New Zealand tends to be ‘a very competitive market’ with a lot of customers purchasing based on total cost of ownership, as opposed to the initial purchase price. "We see that a lot more in New Zealand than in many other countries. There’s a real driver to lowering subsequent operating costs. In New Zealand it comes up in probably nine out of 10 [customer interactions], where in Australia it would be maybe five out of 10 times.” Channel benefits Owens says Extreme is consistently working to remove barriers for existing and future resellers, including reducing both hard and soft costs of bringing on new technology and providing free training. He says the company is also providing higher margins in an effort to support its reseller channel to make their business more profitable. "The product sold should be profitable enough for the reseller. It should not have to be a carrier to alternative revenue. One per cent is not viable unless a reseller can have a raft of other services to attach to it,” Owens says. "Most other vendors work on low or high single digits – 1% to maybe 10%. We’re trying to be very competitive at the customer front end, providing great pricing for them, while retaining at least double, or even treble, the margins seen elsewhere. If we can work around 20 points and win a deal we will. That’s the line in the sand that we try to work to. In networking that’s a figure which has not been talked about for a number of years and it’s rare in sizeable deals which resellers can work in.”

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