NETGEAR eyes 25 percent channel expansion

A photograph of the Netgear WAX630

SMB-focused networking vendor NETGEAR (NASDAQ: NTGR) is aiming to increase its UK channel base by a quarter by 2017.

Speaking to Channel Pro, Pete Hannah, who heads up NETGEAR’s B2B business, says the firm wants to recruit more than 1100 new resellers over the next three years

All of NETGEAR’s 4,500 UK resellers are all managed through distribution – Exertis, Tech Data, Ingram Micro and Enta Tech – with 25 Platinum partners including Softcat, Kelway, CCS Media, and Probrand.

Hannah says that while he can understand enterprise vendors shrinking their partner numbers, NetGear is actively encouraging new sign-ups by making it easy to sell NETGEAR’s product range. “There is no barrier to entry; they don’t need to ay to play with NETGEAR,” he explains.

Hannah – previously business unit director of networking, security, Unified Comms & wireless mobility at Avnet – says NETGEAR aims to achieve the figure by focusing on after specific markets, singling out the hospitality sector in particular.

“We’re moving into markets other vendors don’t target that dramatically,” says Hannah, who claims that two-thirds of hotels in the UK are independently-owned.

The vendor, which says it will offer extra investment to resellers that focus on its target markets, is also looking to bulk up its channel base with non-networking resellers – it’s already grooming digital signage and CCTV resellers selling into hospitality with education road shows with technology workshops.

Hannah believes the breadth of NETGEAR’s portfolio, which includes Power over Ethernet (PoE) switching, storage devices and HD cameras, enable its partners to build a solutions business.

Through a partnership with StorageCraft, NETGEAR this year announced ReadyRECOVER backup, which is built to run with the ReadyDATA family of storage appliances. It enables SMBs to create full backups of servers, desktops and laptops every 15 minutes.

“It’s a green field space for us,” says Hannah, who confirms that StorageCraft’s couple of hundred resellers are also a new route to market for NETGEAR.

Hannah adds that 2015 will see the firm introduce further rebate programmes based on partner performance to invectives resellers into its key verticals or ReadyRecover.

Christine Horton

Christine has been a tech journalist for over 20 years, 10 of which she spent exclusively covering the IT Channel. From 2006-2009 she worked as the editor of Channel Business, before moving on to ChannelPro where she was editor and, latterly, senior editor.

Since 2016, she has been a freelance writer, editor, and copywriter and continues to cover the channel in addition to broader IT themes. Additionally, she provides media training explaining what the channel is and why it’s important to businesses.