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Broadcom acts to calm down the VMware cloud channel furore

Broadcom acts to calm down the VMware cloud channel furore

A widespread channel furore, partners threatened with the axe and then re-signed, cloud service providers terminated, and some of them then threatening to go to European market regulators over their treatment – this is now planet VMware by Broadcom, since the acquisition was completed at the end of last year.

Now, Broadcom is trying to water down the discontent on the cloud services side, with a relaunched VMware Cloud Service Provider (VCSP) programme, with new tiers and new benefits.

Ahmar Mohammad (pictured), Broadcom vice president, partners, managed services, and solutions GTM, said: “Broadcom’s strategy is to drive adoption of our full stack VMware Cloud Foundation as the best subscription-based private cloud platform for our customers’ innovation.

“We will rely heavily on partners to help customers transform their business with our private cloud infrastructure. Our goal is to accelerate innovation, enhance customer value, and optimise profitability and market opportunities for our partners.”

He said VCSP partners will help take VMware Cloud Foundation to a broad set of VMware’s corporate and commercial customers, and deliver it as a managed service.

“By running VMware Cloud Foundation in partner clouds, customers benefit from a highly efficient cloud operating model that provides the scale and agility of public cloud with the security and performance of private cloud,” he added. “VMware cloud providers deliver sovereign cloud services that support data residency, high levels of compliance and other jurisdictional controls.”

The new Advantage Partner Program for VCSP partners is designed to build stronger relationships with “our most valued partners, recognise them for their commitment to Broadcom, and provide them with the capabilities to grow their businesses through simplified pricing, improved margins, and richer benefits”, said Mohammad.

Broadcom’s strategy is to “bring standardisation and consistency” across all of the company’s routes to market. All VCSP partners will deliver services based on the same VMware Cloud Foundation software customers deploy on-prem. “No more different versions of VCF for different environments”, Mohammad said.

“This is crucial to helping customers achieve a true hybrid cloud experience. Delivering services based on the same consistent Cloud Foundation stack enables partners to focus less on infrastructure and more on differentiating their managed services and specialisation.”

And, “one simplified business model”. All services offered by VCSPs will now be based on a per core subscription license. As a result, “customers can expect the same consistent hybrid cloud experience from a solution standpoint, and partners will compete and differentiate based on the value-added services they bring to customers”.

Broadcom will be co-selling with the new VCSP Pinnacle partners to the corporate customer base. “We are aligning our sales team with partners’ sales teams to drive go-to-market execution and help build business for the Pinnacle tier,” said the GTM honcho.

“Reducing the overall size of the VCSP programme will ensure we have the right partners who are capable of delivering consistent Cloud Foundation-based services to customers worldwide. This change will also give VCSP partners more chances to pursue opportunities in the regions they are authorised to serve.”

VCSP Pinnacle Partners are the highest programme level in the Broadcom Advantage Partner programme. Pinnacle partners are seen as “strategic” and boast the most extensive certifications, and a track record of “significant sales and service achievements”, and “broad international coverage”.

VCSP Premier Partners are most often regionally focused, with “robust sales and service capabilities” and “technical validations for servicing the managed services needs of customers in geographically specific regions”.

VCSP Registered Partners have achieved the minimum requirements for the Broadcom Advantage Partner Program, and work through either Pinnacle or Premier partners to access VCF cloud solutions for their existing and future customer base.

Broadcom has also introduced VMware Cloud Commerce Managers: service providers to Broadcom who play two “critical roles” for VCSPs. First, they serve as a trusted advisor to handle all order processes, including submissions and monthly billing for VCSP Pinnacle and Premier partners, “streamlining operations and allowing partners to focus on value creation for their customers”.

Second, they facilitate the adoption and management of VCF for VCSP Premier partners. Cloud Commerce Managers enable VCSP Premier partners to expand their services by offering technical and go-to-market support, directly addressing the challenges of cloud transformation.

“Cloud Commerce Managers help partners deliver a consistent Cloud Foundation hybrid cloud experience, promoting innovation and flexibility,” maintained Mohammad.

In addition, there is a white label model for VCSP Registered tier partners.

“Recognising that not all existing cloud providers will be able to meet the criteria of the new programme, we have evolved the white label model whereby a VCSP Pinnacle or Premier partner can deliver Cloud Foundation entitlements to another cloud service provider in a non-branded manner, enabling the secondary VCSP partner to brand and deliver the service to their customers on their pre-existing hardware,” Mohammad explained.

“Former VMware Partner Connect partners interested in learning more about the white label option can review the VCSP programme flyer and white label programme FAQ inside the Partner Connect portal. New and existing Broadcom partners can review the same information in the Broadcom Advantage partner portal.”

Broadcom has clearly reacted to the channel fall-out from its proposed and actually changed channel strategy for cloud services. Its initiative may well please some partners, or at least pacify others. However, as market competitors, and other existing and ex-VMware partners make ever more noise about the way changes are not improving VMware channel opportunities, Broadcom may well have to do much more.