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Turns out it is NOT all or nothing when it comes to managed services

Spending a couple days this week at the Fall Invitational conference for the Ingram Micro VentureTech Network where as you might imagine there is a lot of talk and posturing about the role of cloud computing and “IT as a service” in the high-tech industry’s future.

One interesting statistic to share from a keynote this morning by Gartner analyst and vice president Tiffani Bova (actually lots of stats, but that’s for another post or two). Gartner’s recent survey of business models for about 140 or so channel types (call ’em VARs, technology solution providers, etc.) uncovered the rather intriguing finding that only 19 percent of the respondents were generating more than 50 percent of their revenue from recurring services. So, despite the fact that many companies call themselves managed service providers (MSPs), there actually probably aren’t ENTIRELY driven by that sort of revenue model.

This is music to the ears of Justin Crotty, vice president of services sales for Ingram Micro, and it jibes with his own team is finding. Turns out that some of the most successful MSPs in Crotty’s acquaintance are hybrids. They still have a healthy product revenue stream and, indeed, often use projects involving a combination of products and professional services as the entry point for their managed services engagements, Crotty says. “IT needs to be a balanced approach,” he says.

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