IT Nation 2016

We are back from IT Nation 2016 and once again, another amazing event by the ConnectWise team- or should I say ConnectWise Manage, ConnectWise Automate, ConnectWise Sell and ConnetcWise Control!!

Just like ConnectWise, growth and change is inevitable and as we heard Arnie Bellini say in his keynote, growth is in the Cloud for the Channel.

During the event, Kent Erickson, ChannelCloud President & CEO, was interviewed by John Moore of TechTarget and agreed that that professional services revenue must now be replaced in the public cloud. Channel partners need to adjust to a new way of doing business, just as they did when learning how to package and monetize managed services. “The transition to MSP [managed service providers] has been going on for 10 to 15 years,” Erickson said. “Now, we are starting that over again to a degree with the cloud.”

ChannelCloud’s response to this need is the CloudSmart Hybrid Server. We certainly generated buzz about the CloudSmart Hybrid Server and received positive feedback and interest. We have a new website you may want to check out that is dedicated just to the Hybrid Server; you can find it at http://www.hybridserver.cloud/.

As for IT Nation 2016, we so enjoyed seeing all of you that stopped by our booth- many ‘old’ friends (I use the term old only in reference to the length of our partnership; not age!) and met many new ones.

We look forward to IT Nation 2017!

 

CloudSmart Hybrid Server Press Release

ChannelCloud Introduces CloudSmart Hybrid Server to address the reality of a Hybrid World

The CloudSmart Hybrid Server gives VAR’s, MSP’s and Telco’s a solution to deploy and manage hybrid cloud environments.

SAN DIEGO, Sept. 21, 2016 /PRNewswire/ — ChannelCloud, a leading channel-focused technology company, today announced the release of their CloudSmart Hybrid Server, a fully managed on-site device that enables small and midsize businesses the ability to have an integrated and managed hybrid environment. CloudSmart Hybrid Servers are designed for organizations that want to adopt a Hybrid IT approach to managing applications and storing data, both on-premises and via cloud services, while maintaining complete control over their security and data. Fully certified by Microsoft as an Azure certified device, the CloudSmart product guarantees the product will meet the changing needs of modern businesses.

The CloudSmart Hybrid Server incorporates cloud integration services with Office 365 and Azure, backs up to both the device and offsite, and performs disaster recovery. It also provides active directory with single sign on, security services, and visibility to all environments and services via a branded centralized dashboard. The product integrates with leading industry RMM and MSP tools and automates deployment and integration of desktop as a service. The CloudSmart server enters the marketplace with a base and business edition model that is pre-configured with high-speed compute, RAM, and storage, and is remotely managed and monitored directly by ChannelCloud. Supplementary services can be added to the server for an additional fee to expand and enhance the capabilities.

Kent Erickson, President/CEO of ChannelCloud said, “Client’s business needs are rapidly changing as they turn to cloud services at breakneck speed, while still maintaining some infrastructure onsite. Businesses must now optimize for two operating environments. We knew we needed to address this change and began immediate development of the hybrid server in conjunction with Microsoft. We performed a soft launch of the CloudSmart Hybrid Servers at several industry shows this past quarter for feedback, which has all been positive. Technology providers are saying they have no solutions to deploy and manage a hybrid cloud environment. We are now thrilled to bring to the channel a revolutionary product to address a hybrid IT world.”

ChannelCloud delivers market-ready resources, solutions, and services to channel companies enabling them to enlarge and accelerate their market reach and penetration with proven cloud and IT offerings specially designed to support their business models and markets. We specialize in “CloudSmart” with economy, easy implementation, and low risk/low commitment growth plans.

ChannelCloud in ChannelE2E!

If you have been in the MSP, SI, VAR, Cloud, or overall technology industry for more than a few months, you have undoubtedly heard the name Joe Panettieri. Joe is the co-founder of successful industry publications including MSP Mentor, The VAR Guy and Talkin’ Cloud. His most recent venture is ChannelE2E which is focused on the IT Service provider’s entire business journey- from entrepreneur to exit.   

 Recently, Joe spent some time speaking with ChannelCloud’s President/CEO Kent Erickson about the CloudSmart Hybrid Server- to read about Joe’s impression of the CloudSmart Hybrid Server.

click here!

 

ChannelCloud Sponsors Industry Events

Along with the launch of our new website and rollout of our family of new CloudSmart Solutions, including the CloudSmart Hybrid Server, ChannelCloud recently spent time speaking directly with the channel as we were a sponsor of these industry events: HostingCon 2016 (July 24th-27th, New Orleans, LA), ChannelCon 2016 (August 1st-3rd, Hollywood, FL), and Channel Partners Evolution 2016 (August 14th-17th, Washington, D.C.).

While each event had its own agenda, key note focus, and educational tracks, one thing was clear from our attendance: ChannelCloud’s CloudSmart Hybrid Server is exclusively positioned in the market to provide partners with a unique set of capabilities and technologies to build solutions and a recurring revenue stream. By combining the hardware, software, and services into a single fixed monthly fee, partners can build bespoke offerings that truly differentiate them from their competitors.

We enjoyed sharing with prospective partners how ChannelCloud offers complete, integrated, end-to-end solutions to help transform them from Cloud Service Providers to new generation Hybrid IT Providers via our Partner Program. It is always good to have the opportunity to interact directly with our existing partners and meet prospective new partners!

In case we missed you at these events, there is one more opportunity in 2016! ConnectWise IT Nation, November 9-11th in Orlando, FL. If you plan on attending, please stop by booth #208 and say ‘hello!’

 

Launching of New Website

ChannelCloud is pleased to officially announce the launch of our new website at www.channelcloud.com. This new site, which has been several months in the making, better represents our position as a front leader in cloud based solutions for the MSP and Telco channels.  Our goal is to provide the visitor with clean and concise messaging on how we support our partners with product and hybrid cloud based services.

The website launch date of July 25th, 2016 was aligned with the rollout of our new family of Hybrid Cloud Server Solutions being introduced at the HostingCon 2016 in New Orleans.    These servers will bridge on premise and cloud technologies and are designed for organization that need to adopt a Hybrid IT approach to managing IT.

We hope that you enjoy our new site and find it clean and informative.  We look forward to your feedback.

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ChannelCloud Partners Update

It’s been over 6 years since we launched ChannelCloud and WOW what a journey it’s been! We thank you for partnering with us and for the role you have played in our mutual success in delivering cloud solutions. From the great debates over the definition of ‘cloud’ and channel’s role in the delivery of cloud services to the commodization of many cloud offerings and the Adoption Curve for cloud compared to where it was 6 years ago, the competitive landscape continues to change—and to adapt, so has ChannelCloud!

Today, we would like to announce our new brand, website, and new products and services!

For the ChannelCloud ‘brand’, we’ve redesigned our entire look and feel from scratch, including our logo, color scheme, and website. Our goal with this redesign and new website (outside of a simple refresh) is to make the content more mobile device friendly, add Blog and Social Media features, and leverage this as a platform to announce our new products and offerings.

We have been watching closely both industry and technology trends and developments in recent years. We have also continued investing in enhancing the ChannelCloud platform and in developing new products for our partners. Subsequently, we are delighted to share with you the details on our new CloudSmart Hybrid IT Appliance product and the new ChannelCloud platform; both of which we believe will greatly enhance your competitiveness and solution differentiation to your client base.

You see us mention ‘Hybrid IT’ but what does it really mean? Hybrid IT – combining on site IT with cloud services – opens up new resources to the IT Manager wanting to implement business enabling solutions. It offers the best of both worlds: on site control with cloud offerings and flexibility. Hybrid IT-as-a-Service combines local IT hardware and software pre-built and pre-integrated into the cloud, remotely managed and priced as a service. It provides a greater opportunity to increase flexibility and scalability, while ensuring a high level of control is kept in the hands of the IT team. As you know, moving to a subscription-based cost model means a large capital outlay is no longer a requirement.

Channel Cloud’s new CloudSmart  Hybrid IT Appliance is a simple onsite server based solution offering tightly integrated compute, storage, networking and virtualization platforms deployed on the clients site. Pre-integrated with cloud services and managed remotely from the cloud, these appliances provide an efficient, flexible and consistent Hybrid IT solution for small to medium businesses. This solution delivers all of the familiar benefits of a local server, with the additional flexibility and cost models associated with cloud solutions. Combined, these benefits deliver new levels of cost benefit and efficiency compared to the traditional server infrastructure.

In addition, the next generation of the ChannelCloud platform, delivered from a Windows 2012 foundation, includes the capability to deliver IaaS, PaaS, SaaS, RaaS, and DaaS services all from a self-service portal. This new generation platform also includes a tight integration to Windows Azure and O365, where you can leverage your CSP or ChannelCloud’s CSP licensing, expand the breadth and depth of your offerings. For DaaS customers, automated provisioning delivering  a complete environment in 1 hour (versus 1-3 days), user profile disks and a secure remote access gateway are just some of the new features and functionalities.  Along with a simplified sales enablement model, marketing collateral, easy ordering procedure, and familiar support process, you are ensured a smooth transition to the new platform and go to market planning to acquire new customers.

There is more to share and we are planning to invite you to a webinar in the coming weeks to do just that. Your feedback is more than welcome and please be sure to check back to this Blog page for more exciting announcements!

The Reality of Hybrid IT for Telco’s

Does Hybrid IT best describe the reality of how most IT deployments and organization will exist for the foreseeable future….! Can Telco’s address that market opportunity…?

Let me start by sharing a definition for Hybrid IT: Hybrid IT is an approach to enterprise computing in which an organization provides and manages some information technology (IT) resources in-house but uses cloud-based services for others. A hybrid approach allows an enterprise to maintain a centralized approach to IT governance, while transforming to cloud computing.

We see three forces driving the adoption of Hybrid IT:

  1. The need to maintain control of data
  2. The cost effectiveness of cloud components such as SaaS, IaaS & PaaS
  3. The need to respond quickly to rapidly changing business needs.

At the recent Telco-cloud Telco Cloud Forum event in London on May 10th /11th there was explosive interest in how Telco’s can better leverage opportunities within their customer base around Cloud and associated cloud services by playing a stronger intermediary role.

The overriding message was that this is a BIG and exploding opportunity and positioning themselves as a credible intermediary / broker to the SMB sector in this space was a key business objective for many.

As part of their traditional business model, Telco’s have been utilizing specially built data centers for large enterprise customers with long term contracts for years.  However, over the last few years, the public cloud market and Hybrid Cloud approach has grown exponentially, led by giants like Amazon with AWS and Microsoft with Azure. The O365 momentum at the business user level is helping  Telco’s now recognize their opportunity to become leading public cloud brokers by partnering with these market leaders. As such, they can integrate their solutions and present value-added services to their customers as well as create new business opportunities in the growing cloud market. * The Telco challenge is, how do you create differentiation and add value on top of a commodity product such as the public cloud?

Within the larger enterprise customers with larger dedicated IT functions availing of the increase in transition methodologies, and migration tools has enabled traditional enterprises to leverage the public cloud for their new IT projects and developments whilst sustaining internal IT and private virtualized cloud deployments.

Speaking to a few of the larger Telco’s at the show I heard how they’ve seen how their established enterprise customers leverage the public cloud’s flexibility and reap the benefits of running efficient IT operations for substantially lower costs. The emerging untapped potential I explained is to bring this enterprise grade experience into the broader SMB business sector. (For clarity my definition of SMB here is 50 to 250 employees) Today, Telco’s are successfully interconnecting IT organizations with the public cloud. One of the main examples of this is a Direct Connect capability the leading vendors like AWS and Azure are offering, enabling customers to establish a private virtual interface from their on-premises networks directly to their public environments

Telco’s still heavily rely on internal data centers selling their own custom data center solutions, giving birth to the challenge of managing both parts of the market along with a growing customer push to use large public clouds such as Azure.

Telco leaders are starting to recognize this trend and recognize the fact that in order to play an active role in the market, they need to become intermediaries with value-added cloud based solutions. They have already made significant investments in order to stay in the game to-date, acquiring skills and assets to serve IT organizations with their public cloud environments. However, by becoming mediators in the public cloud realm, telco’s face a packaging and delivery challenge in the transition from their traditional role as data center builders. This is where the value of the specialized integration partners comes to the fore. By becoming cloud resellers or brokers, telco’s have to make sure current public cloud pricing structures  fit into their businesses model. Contrary to the high margin associated with traditional connectivity and IT integration services, the cloud’s economies of scale are associated with slim margins and therefore may present significant business risks.

Due to these risks, telco’s must recognize the importance of packaging public cloud services in a way that offers telco-like solutions, meeting their own business needs by driving incremental service offers as well as meeting customer requirements.

A key sponsor and exhibitor at the show ChannelCloud ( www.channelcloud.com) was demonstrating their new CloudSmart Hybrid Server.   ChannelCloud’s Hybrid Server is a fully managed on-site device that enables small businesses to get up and running quickly by leveraging a comprehensive suite of IT services and integration tools that simplify the migration to Public and Private cloud. Fully certified by Microsoft as compatible with hybrid cloud implementations and provides a seamless integration with services such as Office365, Private Cloud and Azure Public Cloud.

This solutions enables the Enterprise or SMB customer to leverage Public Cloud capabilities, deploy local private cloud and fully manage existing onsite traditional IT infrastructure. http://www.channelcloud.com/what-we-do/

This was of particular interest as it is deployed by the telco onto their customer sites, is fully remotely managed by ChannelCloud, is branded in the Telco, there is NO upfront cost and is based on a recurring monthly fee.

For this article, I have outlined five major reasons telecom companies are well positioned for cloud computing:

  1. Network monitoring: the ability to monitor networks and ensure delivery of cloud services is a major advantage that telecom companies have over businesses that only handle service platforms and data centers (no network, no Cloud)
  2. Operation and maintenance: this includes customer support, large-scale billing, and operating cloud service platforms and networks for several hundreds of millions of users.
  3. User experience and customer relations: telecom/ITC companies have developed a high level of understanding of user experience and customer relations with individual customers, small -and medium- businesses, and large companies.
  4. Trusted partner: customers see these companies as trusted partners with good reputations for data security and privacy. Regional locations are also an advantage. Most companies apply ISO and UIT-T security standards for networks and service platforms.
  5. Service broker: these companies can serve as a broker between cloud service providers and users, thus creating a new role in the market. They can also ensure delivery of cloud services to public and private networks.

 With their strong position in this field, the Cloud is the opportunity for telecom/ICT companies to successfully migrate to cloud services, which means moving from supplying fixed, mobile and data communications services, to supplying services based on cloud computing technologies.

Working with and adopting solutions from Cloud specialist partners greatly reduces their time to market and provides for solution credibility to their target customers.