There will be three levels of partnership, Select, Premier, and Strategic, with Select being the entry level. While Select will be a relatively straightforward channel partnership, at each level the ties between the two companies will become stronger. At the Strategic level Ericsson will work closely with the partner’s sales efforts, having a personal channel manager guiding them.
“We’re very excited about our Channel Partner program,” says Jan Häglund, Head of Product Area IP & Broadband. “It’s a great complement to the go-to-market model that we already have. We decided to launch a structured approach around channel partners so we can broaden our customer base and the addressable market for our solutions.”
Telent is one of Ericsson’s partners in Germany. The company provides a broad range of network and communications services across a variety of industries. Stamatina Bärmann works with business development at Telent and is handling the relationship with the company’s strategic partners.
“We have a really close relationship with Ericsson and are in contact with them on a daily basis,” Bärmann says. “Adding Ericsson’s Channel Partner program is exciting and it’s vital for us to have a simple interface towards our partners. Some of the things that are important to us are e-learning, fast deliveries and updates on new releases.”
Häglund says the new program will bring Ericsson technology to new types of customers outside of the conventional operator market. “What we do is very much focused on carriers but what we have in our portfolio now is very valuable for other segments.”
However, not everyone will make the grade, Häglund says. “We will be very selective in our choice of partners so that they have the right competence and willingness. So far there has been an enormous interest to work with Ericsson and it’s really win-win. It’s a win for us because we get to address a broad customer base and it’s a win for the partner because Ericsson is a strong company with a lot of competence and they will be able to access our solutions.”
Ericsson already has a lot of local presence in more than 180 countries and by reaching out to potential new clients in different regions, local knowledge will only get greater. “We have the possibility to give global support but also local support,” Häglund says. “It’s very much about local business, competence and successful delivery and we’ve committed to that.”
Another benefit of working with Ericsson is exclusive access to an e-business portal which will provide a range of online resources, services and products. It will also offer e-learning training for resellers, making product and sales courses available 24/7 for channel partners.