Network, security and telecom VAD Westcon Group has acquired the assets of Verecloud, the developer of a channel distribution platform for cloud and services solutions. Verecloud will be incorporated in Westcon Group's Cloud Solutions Practice, which will be led by former Verecloud CEO John McCawley. Founded in 2006, privately-held Verecloud has developed a robust, Telecom carrier-grade, cloud services aggregation and brokerage platform with the ability to process millions of concurrent transactions in real time, including subscription and usage-based services delivered by multiple third-party services providers. The platform will form the foundation of Westcon Group's cloud digital distribution solution, designed to help value-added resellers (VARs) generate significant revenue from cloud-enabled services. "Weston Group and Verecloud have been working together during the past 18 months and co-developed a truly differentiated cloud go-to-market capability for the channel. Our services distribution solution sets us apart from the industry, hence we decided to 'in-source' that intellectual property through this acquisition. Coupling our channel cloud enablement services with Verecloud's acquisition will position Westcon Group Cloud Solutions to drive the business models of tomorrow," said Dolph Westerbos, Chief Executive Officer, Westcon Group. Technology OEMs and cloud service providers (CSPs) look for a partner that can "light up" the channel. Westcon Group delivers this through its robust cloud distribution solution – freeing resellers to focus on development of their IP, including value-added professional services and technical expertise to build a cloud practice unburdened by practical challenges, such as micro-transaction billing, service level monitoring, up- and cross-selling, etc. Westcon Group links third-party cloud offers to resellers and their end customers, and now offers an additional go-to-market channel for the resellers' own services offerings. Bringing these aggregated solutions to market on a scalable, multi-tiered, and full-lifecycle management platform will generate new revenues for technology OEMs, cloud service providers, and value-added resellers. Continued Westerbos: "Channel innovation is core to our business, and ownership of our digital distribution platform allows us to bring differentiated, exclusive solutions to the channel without relying on third-party software development. Furthermore, having cloud services distribution fully integrated with our hardware and software distribution systems and operational processes allows us to seamlessly transact cloud and hybrid solutions as business-as-usual." Westcon Group's cloud and services distribution platform delivers the following core capabilities:
- Cloud/Service Offer Catalogue: Featuring compelling bundled and stand-alone offers, including demo capabilities from best of breed vendors and Cloud Service Providers — tailored by industry, by vendor community, or by technology eco-system.
- Solution Bundling: Aggregating best-of-breed cloud and service offers across multiple vendors — ranging from more traditional technology OEMs to Cloud Service Providers to Value Added Reseller solutions. The solution also provides consolidated purchasing and billing data.
- Multi-Tier Cloud Syndication: Selling service, software and hybrid technology solutions through a channel-optimized architecture, and full lifecycle management across multi-tiers. Channel tiers include the technology vendor, service provider, distributor, reseller, and ultimately to the end customer and their employees. Each party in the channel can procure, deliver, bill, monitor, and adjust usage and services — whether that service has been purchased through the platform, or direct via the vendor’s/CSP’s portal.
- White-Label/Reseller-Branded Web Stores: Cloud and service solutions can be offered as a standalone reseller-branded Web store or fed into their existing marketplaces. Service offers can likewise be reseller-branded, allowing the VAR to broaden its go-to-market position.
- Automated Services Delivery Lifecycle: Including inventory discovery and service fulfillment – real-time and across multiple vendors; Visibility into services purchased, used, and modified – at any level in the channel ecosystem; Real-time service rating and billing through highly scalable micro-transaction engine; Service level assurance including real time monitoring, compliance and remediation; Identity management and account synchronization, as well as end user change management.
Westcon Group also provides channel enablement services to help resellers manage their business transformation. Westcon Group is building a set of critical Operational Support Services (OSS) and Business Support Services (BSS) to help VARs become successful cloud partners. Over the next year, these white-labelled/reseller-branded offerings will include:
- Billing-as-a-Service, allowing resellers to bill for usage-based micro-transactions
- Up- and cross-selling to monetize the initial contract sale and broaden service adoption
- Marketing and campaign management to broaden customer reach
- Legal contract creation services to create a legal framework and contracts for multi-tier service management
- Contract renewal /subscription management to help secure ongoing revenues
- Reseller Sales Enablement and training, including a cloud transformation playbook
- Return-On-Investment analysis, including Westcon Group’s Cloud ROI model and executive presentation tool for reseller training or joint end customer modeling
- Technical Support for cloud services, migration, implementation and SLA management, including training of reseller’s technical staff.