Initial Cloud Channel Summit Set, Focus on Market Opportunities

THINKstrategies Inc., a Wellesley, MA-based market researcher, said that it will hold its first Cloud Channel Summit on November 7, 2011 at the Computer History Museum in Mountain View, CA, the focus of which will be identifying new opportunities in the cloud market for channel partners, officials said.

Organizers expect the event will attract some 200 executives from cloud computing companies and channel organizations. Rising Tide Media also is involved in organizing the conference.

Jeffrey Kaplan, THINKstrategies founder and managing director, said that the conference is geared toward defining the channel's role in cloud computing and providing best practices for channel partners and vendors to build profitable partnerships.

"There is a common misperception that the role of the channel will diminish as cloud computing grows, when in fact, the exact opposite is true," said Kaplan.

Kaplan said that cloud vendors will use the conference to increase awareness about their channel programs.

"If the cloud computing market is to thrive, cloud vendors cannot go it alone," he said. "They will need channel partners who can enhance their solutions, customize their capabilities and improve customer service by addressing the unique requirements of specific market segments."

Stephen Cho, Google Enterprise director, channel and business development, is slated to deliver the opening keynote in which he will speak about new channel opportunities in the cloud.

Additional speakers include Eileen Boerger, Agilis Solutions president; Peter Chase, Scribe Software Corp. founder and executive vice president, business development; Daniel Saks, AppDirect founder, president and chief executive. Kaplan also will address the attendees.

The conference will provide examples of cloud success stories, information on selling and supporting cloud services and leveraging Platform-as-Service (PaaS) and Infrastructure-as-a-Service (IaaS) options. Key topics to be covered in panel discussions include what works in winning channel programs, building and leveraging a cloud ecosystem, the economics of a winning cloud partnership, and building collaborative sales and support models.

Initial event sponsors include AppDirect, Agilis and Scribe.

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