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Green data center partners with VARs, MSPs

Green House Data, which offers green data centers in seven regional locations, has unveiled a partner program targeting value-added resellers and managed service providers.

Green House Data, which provides cloud hosting, colocation and disaster recovery services, today launched a channel partner program for value-added resellers and managed services providers.

The company, based in Cheyenne, Wyo., was founded in 2007 and had been focusing mainly on direct sales. A few channel companies, however, began working with Green House Data and eventually began asking why the company lacked a formal program for its data center partners, noted Shawn Mills, CEO of Green House Data. The company decided to create such a program, and now expects channel partners to eventually generate 25% of the company's revenue and 75% of its deal volume.

Mills said partners will help the company reach out to small and medium-sized business customers.

"We don't have the bandwidth to attack all the way down to the smaller customers," Mills explained. The company has signed nearly 50 channel partners and aims to grow that roster to 100 partners by the end of 2016. The company also plans to add at least two master agents to its mix of data center partners.

Green House Data's partner program offers a 15-minute "hear from a human" response time service-level agreement, and white-label, reseller and agent partnership options. The company operates data center facilities in seven regional locations: Cheyenne; Portland, Ore.; Piscataway, N.J.; Orangeburg, N.Y.; and Seattle, Everett and Bellingham, Wash.

Partnering approach

Scott Anderson, president and CEO of CORE Business Services, a managed services provider (MSP) based in Medford, Ore., said his company came across Green House Data when it was looking for a disaster recovery site. That was about five years ago. Today, the MSP backs up all of its clients' on-premises server data to a Green House Data facility, according to Anderson. The backup data is mirrored to a second Green House data center. CORE Business Services also uses the company's data centers to accommodate customers that opt to deploy IT infrastructure in the cloud.

They have a good-sized marketing team and have assisted us in marketing efforts.
Scott Andersonpresident and CEO, CORE Business Services

Anderson cited Green House Data's partnering approach as the key reason the MSP works with the data center provider. He described Green House Data as flexible, noting that the company will create "one-off solutions" to fit customers' particular needs. In addition, he noted that Mills visits his office a couple of times a year to build the relationship and discuss new offerings under development. The companies also collaborate on lunch-and-learn events to brief customers on disaster recovery and cloud.

"They have a good-sized marketing team and have assisted us in marketing efforts," Anderson said, noting that the company wouldn't receive the same level of service from the "Amazons and Microsofts of the world."

Mills added that Green House Data's sales engineers and technical sales consultants help a channel partner's salespeople design offerings for their end clients.

Green computing: A plus for data center partners?

While Green House Data emphasizes close partnerships, it also offers green computing as an attraction. The company ranks 23rd in the Environmental Protection Agency's Top 30 Tech & Telecom list of the largest green power users in the Green Power Partnership. The Green Power Partnership, a voluntary program that promotes green power use, has more than 1,300 organizations.

Mills said Green House Data uses such techniques as hot aisle containment and indirect evaporative cooling to drive down the company's power usage effectiveness (PUE) ratio. Energy efficiency increases as the PUE quotient approaches one. According to Green House Data, the company has an average PUE of 1.25, with its Cheyenne facility reporting 1.14 PUE.

Anderson cited Green House Data's partnership approach as the primary reason for working with the data center provider, but called green computing a value-add.

"Green is obviously a bigger and bigger play these days," Anderson said. "Sustainability is something we ... try to practice."

Next Steps

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When you select data center partners, how much of a factor is green computing in your evaluation?
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A huge part. Not only because the environment is teetering on the edge of viability (which should be a major consideration for any company), but because advanced thinking a strong indication of technical prowess. Companies struggling for survival don't worry about the world around them.
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Thanks for your feedback, ncberns. That's a good insight regarding green computing as a indication of overall technical ability. 
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For my group, it hasn’t been too much of a consideration, mostly because our biggest driving factor is geographic location. Our CDN partner requires us to geographically distribute our load when we perform a load/performance test on our sites.
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Makes sense -- the specific needs of partners/customers will set the data center strategy. 
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Interesting stuff
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Just came across this today on an experimental solar-powered data center in Massachusetts: http://www.mghpcc.org/news/ 
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