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June 2011, Vol. 2 No. 2

Navigating the vendor merger and acquisition binge

A common pitfall for many VARs is to get too cozy with one vendor and rely on that single relationship for way too much of their business. But if there’s one thing IT solution providers cannot be, it’s fat, dumb and happy—at least not if they expect to survive. It’s fine to be a “preferred” reseller for Vendor A, until Vendor A gets acquired or gets new leadership that does not see the value in the value-added channel. Just ask any number of VARs that made their living selling Sun Microsystems hardware, support and maintenance. There are a heck of a lot fewer of them today than there were a year ago. Why? Because of Oracle Corp., that’s why. Oracle completed its $7 billion-plus acquisition of Sun in January 2010, more than a year after it announced its intention to buy. Oracle is famous for its complicated relationships with channel partners. The company is well known for its direct sales preference and for the fact that all maintenance and updates after the first year flow directly through Oracle, not via partners. “There were ...

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