IBM Business Partners Help Accelerate Linux Adoption

Posted by dave on Mar 16, 2004 4:40 PM EDT
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IBM today announced new partners, programs and incentives that are helping to fuel Linux adoption and growth among small- to medium-sized businesses.

SOMERS, NY -- 16-03-2004 -- IBM today announced new partners, programs and incentives that are helping to fuel Linux adoption and growth among small- to medium-sized businesses.

Announcements today include new co-marketing incentives to encourage IBM Business Partners to form Value Networks with each other to help SMBs implement Linux solutions; additional incentives for solutions focused on Linux for POWER; new security companies for its recently announced NT-to-Linux-Migration Program; and continued momentum for IBM's "Double Your Discount" program.

New Value Network Incentives

Market research shows that more than a quarter of customers prefer an all-in-one solution for their Linux needs, so the concept of Value Networks -- introduced by IBM last year -- brings together a combination of IBM Business Partners to create networks that consist of a combination of distributors, resellers, consultants, integrators and ISVs. These networks help SMBs implement repeatable Linux solutions by tapping into the expertise of multiple Business Partners working together.

To encourage the formation of more Value Networks, IBM today is increasing its co-marketing incentives for Leaders for Linux, which are select Business Partners that form the foundation of Value Networks. Business Partners qualifying for Leaders for Linux more than doubled from 75 to more than 200 in the past year. Leaders for Linux partners can qualify for up to $5,000 in telemarketing campaigns focused around four key solution areas. New in 2004, partners can now receive $7,500 if the solution is based on Linux on POWER; and $10,000 (double the normal incentive) if the Linux solution is created as part of a Value Network.

"The rapid and accelerating pace of innovation today means that it is virtually impossible for one company, or one vendor, to provide the IT needs for all customers, which is why Siwel joined with ABAS in a Value Network," said Lew Johnson, President of Siwel Consulting. "Last year, when IBM first introduced the concept of Value Networks, we immediately reached out to ABAS, recognizing that with our combined strengths we could much more quickly implement a Linux solution. Together, we've already delivered a complete Linux-based solution to several customers. For example GKD, a manufacturer of woven metal products used by designers and architects, implemented a solution consisting of an IBM eServer xSeries platform, Linux and ABAS ERP software that allows GKD to reduce the cost and complexity of managing their business."

The formation of Value Networks deliver value to both customers and business partners. Customers benefit from lower start-up costs, reduced skills management and more rapid and successful implementations because they are implementing a repeatable solution. Business Partners benefit by tapping into new revenue streams, increased profits by selling solutions, and increased competitiveness by offering a broader range of IT solutions that they couldn't provide without the benefit and skill of other Business Partners.

Double Your Discount

The Leaders for Linux Value Network incentives are in addition to the "Double-Your-Discount" program that allows Business Partners to keep 60 percent of the margins they earn when they sell IBM software that runs on Linux. These margins are designed to assist IBM partners so they can continue to fund increased investments in their Linux solutions to keep up with accelerating customer demand.

Business Partner engagements through the Double Your Discount program have increased by more than 700 percent in the first two months of 2004.

"Double your discount demonstrates IBM's strategic commitment to Linux and the partner channel," said Bob Hoover, senior, vice president, sales and marketing, TamGroup. "The significant increase in our gross profit from software resale enables us to bundle more services and ensure the customer fully realizes the advantages of Linux. We are actively deploying mission critical web applications using IBM server and software infrastructure running Linux with great results and demonstrates lower Total Cost of Ownership."

NT-to-Linux Migration Partner Growth Doubles

In just six weeks since IBM introduced its NT-to-Linux Migration Program, the number of companies joining the program has grown 55 percent, from 20 to 45 active Business Partners, with more joining regularly.

Microsoft will end support for the Windows NT operating system and will discontinue the availability of security patches by the end of this year, which will require up to two million customers to develop a migration strategy. IBM estimates that over 50,000 Windows NT servers have been migrated to Linux already in 2004.

Security is a hot button among the new companies as IBM has added four new partners to its lineup of Security solutions for NT customers migrating to Linux. These partners include: Trend Micro, a leading anti-virus software vendor; Secure Elements, which provides security-threat intelligence for analysis and countermeasures; BladeFusion, which provides solutions that offer high-availability, dynamic blade-allocation, network topology, switch fail-over and hot-swap maintenance for top ISV applications, including Check Point; and Sourcefire, which provides Intelligent Security Monitoring Solutions.

"While the security issues around Windows servers are well known by our customers, its important to have strong security solutions on Linux and more importantly to have capacity within our Business Partner channel to deal with the onslaught of customer requests to use Linux to secure their infrastructures," said Scott Handy, vice president, world wide Linux strategy and market development, IBM. "We knew security would be a big seller for Linux versus Windows, but it is gratifying to have a migration program that resonates so well with our partners that security partners approached us to join and help come help execute more broadly in the market."

"With IBM's help, SecureLinx has already implemented two NT-to-Linux migration projects, including a complete Microsoft back office replacement, for a customer in Ireland," said Brian Farrell CTO, SecureLinx. "With the planned sunset of Microsoft NT support, many additional companies are now seriously looking at a move to Linux so they are not locked into a single vendor and can benefit from Linux' superior security and cost effectiveness."

Business Partners interested in more information about IBM's Value Networks, NT-to-Linux-Migration, and Double Your Discount Programs should go to []

Majority of IBM's ISVs Support Linux

Showing mainstream strength of Linux adoption by IBM's ISVs servicing small- to-medium-sized businesses, IBM recently announced that the 200th ISV has joined its ISV Advantage program and that 70 percent of the program participants are actively supporting or committed to supporting Linux. Participating ISVs are entitled to incentives for their Linux-based offerings, including an additional $10,000 in Linux co-marketing, up to $20,000 in Linux sales incentives, and access to fifteen Linux Porting Centers worldwide at no additional charge.

Business Partners interested in more information about IBM's Linux for Leaders, Value Networks, Double Your Discount, NT-to-Linux-Migration, ISV Advantage Program (or just ISV Programs), should go to []

About IBM

IBM is the world's largest information technology company, with 80 years of leadership in helping businesses innovate. Drawing on resources from across IBM and key IBM Business Partners, IBM offers a wide range of services, solutions and technologies that enable customers, large and small, to take full advantage of the new era of e-business. For more information about IBM and Linux, visit []

All trademarks or registered trademarks are property of their respective owners.

Mike Darcy IBM 914-766-4777 []

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