Tech Data to offer VMware DRaaS on vCloud Hybrid Service

VMware DRaaS is the latest addition to Tech Data services available on VMware's vCloud Hybrid Service, with more on the way.

ORLANDO, Fla. -- In a move that expands its relationship with VMware Corp., Tech Data Corp. today announced that partners can offer VMware vCloud Hybrid Service including Disaster Recovery as a Service (DRaaS), a native cloud-based disaster recovery capability for applications running in a VMware vSphere virtual environment. The announcement was made in conjunction with Tech Data's TechSelect Partner Conference being held here this clweek.

The new VMware DRaaS offering, available through Tech Data's Solutions Store, allows solution providers to offer vCloud Hybrid Service -- Disaster Recovery to customers that have already deployed infrastructure and also gives partners a robust solution for new deployments at midsize organizations, according to the distributor.

The VMware DRaaS offering is owned and operated by VMware and is built on vSphere Replication and vCloud Hybrid Service, a hybrid cloud platform for Infrastructure as a Service (IaaS). This latest offering builds on Tech Data's initial offering of VMware vCloud Hybrid Service in September 2013.

"DRaaS … is exciting to us because it allows a partner to talk about a solution that can solve a specific business problem for their customers," said Stacy Nethercoat, vice president of product marketing, software and cloud services at Tech Data.

Partners can expect to see additional VMware vCloud Hybrid Service offerings from Tech Data very soon.

Peter McKay, VMware's vice president of sales EUC (end user computing) Americas and general manager of DaaS, pitched the company's new Horizon DaaS, a cloud-based Desktop as a Service (DaaS) offering that runs on VMware vCloud Hybrid Service, at VMware's keynote address today at TechSelect. VMware purchased DaaS vendor Desktone, where McKay served as CEO, in October 2013.

Today, Horizon DaaS, which was introduced in March, is part of VMware's vision for end user computing. The service is available from VMware or VMware Horizon Powered service providers in two SKUs. Standard Edition, for $35 per desktop per month, targets knowledge workers and Advanced Edition, for $50 per desktop per month, targets power workers.

The VMware executive and EUC evangelist pointed to three channel plays for partners: to upsell existing VMware Horizon View customers from Standard edition to Horizon 6 (with View) Enterprise edition; to go after Citrix XenApp and XenDesktop customers with Horizon 6; and, finally, to offer Horizon DaaS.

McKay also noted that in the near future partners can expect to see a more channel-friendly play from AirWatch, which was acquired by VMware earlier this year, as VMware integrates AirWatch's enterprise mobility management technology into its EUC strategy and Horizon DaaS offering.

"What we're trying to do is to help the partner community get into the right opportunities and get our partners to a recurring revenue model," McKay said.

Kenny Lance, president and CEO of NetBase Technologies of Hattiesburg, Miss., said that 50% of revenue at his company is driven by managed services today, including some cloud-based offerings that are mostly security-focused. NetBase works primarily with local businesses and has been a TechSelect partner for about a dozen years.

Lance said he's interested in learning more about VMware's Horizon DaaS, after listening to McKay, although his company is more aligned with Citrix Systems Inc. than with VMware. "I'll have to evaluate whether the VMware offering is better than Citrix," he said. He currently has a proposal out to a customer for Citrix DaaS.

Lance said customers are open to solutions that his company recommends. "I think that we'll start leading with this type of solution because you can't swim upstream. It's all going this way," he said. "I love it because it's a recurring revenue model, but it's not necessarily the best economic choice for every the customer," he added, noting that for customers with a lot of mobile users, DaaS makes sense.

NetBase has customers from a variety of vertical industries, such as healthcare, manufacturing, and some state and local government agencies.

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