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Ascend.io grows program for partners building data pipelines

Ascend.io said it is broadening its global partner footprint and added new partnerships with enterprise architecture advisory and data consultancy firms; other IT channel news.

Ascend.io, which provides a platform for building data pipelines, has expanded its partner program to extend the company's global reach and cultivate a role in digital transformation projects.

Ascend.io CEO and founder Sean Knapp said the company signed up several enterprise architecture advisory and data consultancy partners to its channel roster. New partners include The Singularity Mesh, a digital enablement company based in Australia; X is Y, a management consulting firm based in New Zealand; Moviri, a consulting and engineering firm based in Italy; and Flare Build Systems, a SaaS, training and consulting company based in San Francisco.

Partners have been part of Ascend.io's strategy from the company's beginnings. The Palo Alto, Calif., company emerged from stealth in 2019 and soon discovered interest among solutions providers. "One of the things we noticed as we launched our company … was that a huge proportion of early sign-ups were from a lot of these solutions partners," Knapp said. "They had real-world, pragmatic use cases and were deep in the trenches with clients."

The company's Ascend Unified Data Engineering Platform lets organizations build data pipelines that move data from a variety of sources to a data lake, data warehouse or other destination. The platform, for example, migrates data to cloud resources such as a Snowflake data warehouse or an Azure SQL Data Warehouse. Knapp characterizes his company's technology as a modernized extract, transform and load (ETL) offering. He said the Ascend.io platform differs from the previous generation of ETL in that it runs on hyperscalers' cloud ecosystems and provides an AI layer to help automate data movement and optimize data systems such as data lakes

Automation means data teams need fewer people to work on a given project, Knapp noted. This approach may not suit partners that rely on billable hours. The company, however, is focusing on partners eager to introduce technologies that offer greater efficiency on a truncated timeline, he said.

Partners' digital transformation customers are "trying to get live, from prototype to production, in a matter of months," Knapp said.

While partners can offer their customers a new take on ETL, Ascend.io benefits from more feet on the global street. "Service providers give us global reach much faster, regional support, and let us drop into a lot more markets faster than we ordinarily could," Knapp said.

Ascend.io currently generates 25% to 30% of its business through partners and aims to boost its indirect sales to more than 50% in 2021. He said partners offer local relationships and time-zone affinities along with expertise in Ascend.io's platform.

"As we find opportunities in their geographies, we much prefer to work through our partners," he said.

Knapp said his company is looking to build a strong relationship with a partner in each geographic region. Ascend.io also seeks to expand its industry coverage through partners. Service providers joining Ascend.io's partner program can expect features such as co-marketing dollars, revenue sharing and road-mapping/planning sessions.

Other news

  • Accenture agreed to purchase End-to-End Analytics, an analytics and data science consultancy based in Palo Alto. The boutique consulting firm, which has additional offices in Brazil, provides experience in the high tech, retail, industrial, automotive and consumer goods industries. When the deal closes, End-to-End Analytics will become part of Accenture's Applied Intelligence practice.
  • Evotek, a technology solutions provider based in San Diego, unveiled an initiative that lets IT leaders select an Evotek executive to act as an advisor and IT strategy champion. The company's "Swipe Right" program, a riff on online dating apps, aims to make matches between customers and Evotek's CTO, CISO and chief innovation officer, among other executives, who are profiled on the company's website. Once selected, the executive collaborates with the customer and a team of engineers from Evotek and Intel to build a "custom solution," according to the company. Although Intel is participating, the Swipe Right program is not limited to Intel offerings, an Evotek spokeswoman noted.
  • Central Networks and Technologies, an IT service and support provider based in the Greater Manchester area in the United Kingdom, won a contract to provide managed services to Bron Afon, a Welsh housing provider. Central Networks and Technologies, which offers outsourced IT support and service desk capabilities, will provide first-, second- and third-line support under the contract. In addition, a member of the company's engineering team will work full-time at Bron Afon's main office.
  • Woolpert, an architecture, engineering and geospatial company and consulting firm based in Dayton, Ohio, said it reached Gold Tier status in GIS software vendor Esri's partner network.
  • Protegrity, a data security company based in Salt Lake City, partnered with Latbc, a technology consulting firm based in Mexico City. The alliance aims to bring the Protegrity Data Protection Platform to enterprises in the Latin American market.

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