Appirio, a cloud services provider, rolled out prebuilt offerings on Salesforce Lightning at Dreamforce 2017, which wrapped up this week in San Francisco.
The Wipro company's prebuilt wares, referred to as Salesforce Lightning Bolt solutions in the SaaS vendor's terminology, target the retail and healthcare vertical markets and employee engagement as a horizontal market.
Salesforce Lightning, the vendor's platform-wide upgrade, debuted two years ago, and customer migration to the environment was a key theme at Dreamforce 2017. The Salesforce Lightning Bolt approach, which the company unveiled in 2016, lets Salesforce partners create new communities, portals or websites that integrate with Salesforce customer relationship management. Salesforce intends for the Lightning Bolts to be reusable, industry-specific offerings.
The ability to develop custom, repeatable Salesforce Lightning Bolt solutions appeals to channel partners.
"That is why [Salesforce Lightning Bolt] resonates with us and other systems integrators," said Yoni Barkan, director of solutions and innovation at Appirio, based in Indianapolis. "These are solutions that we feel show our industry expertise in a particular area and allow us to leverage that."
Yoni Barkandirector of solutions and innovation at Appirio
Appirio's Bolt lineup includes a retail and franchise offering that aims to facilitate collaboration among franchisors and franchisees, home offices and retail partners. Barkan said the Lightning Bolt lets participants view their own branding -- a franchisee's or home office's branding, for example -- while participating in the Salesforce-based community.
Also in the retail and franchise space, Appirio's promotion management Lightning Bolt provides a collaboration platform for managing new promotions and brand updates. Barkan said the promotion use case stems from work the company has undertaken with a global franchise company.
A medical device ordering and sales Lightning Bolt, meanwhile, seeks to bolster communication and collaboration among manufacturers, distributors and suppliers. And an employee community and social intranet Salesforce Lightning Bolt targets employee engagement. For that Bolt, Appirio is partnering with vendors such as Stantive Technologies Group, which provides the OrchestraCMS content management system.
Green House Data, Ingram in acquisition mode
Green House Data, a cloud hosting and managed services company based in Cheyenne, Wyo., has acquired Ajubeo, an infrastructure-as-a-service (IaaS) provider based in Boulder, Colo.
The purchase provides Green House Data a presence in the Rocky Mountain region, adding to its geographic expansion. The company in April 2017 purchased IaaS provider Cirracore, which has operations in Atlanta and Dallas.
"We've largely based acquisition and expansion strategies around a combination of customer demand, geodiversity and, of course, market opportunity," said Shawn Mills, president and CEO at Green House Data. "For example, we acquired into Atlanta earlier this year because 75% of Fortune 1000 companies have some kind of presence in this market, so it is advantageous to both our clients and to organic growth."
From the cloud services point of view, Green House Data's Ajubeo purchase was also driven by the latter company's private cloud practice, Mills noted.
Cloud services companies are acquiring other firms to shore up skills in an increasingly multi-cloud environment. Mills said multi-cloud customer engagements are "more and more the norm than an anomaly."
Ingram Micro Inc., meanwhile, acquired The Phoenix Group, a distributor of point-of-sale (POS) technology for the U.S. and Canadian electronic payments markets. According to Ingram Micro, The Phoenix Group's management and associates will operate as a division of Ingram Micro.
- Big Switch Networks, a data center networking vendor, launched a channel program the company said provides partner incentives, training, certification and enablement programs, along with professional services opportunities. The company's channel partner program is based on two tiers: The Big Switch Authorized Partner tier is open to partners who are authorized networking resellers of Dell EMC or Hewlett Packard Enterprise. Channel partners can also qualify for that tier by signing a Big Switch VAR agreement for selling Edgecore and Big Switch offerings. The Big Switch Premier Partner tier is open to partner that meet the Authorized Partner requirements and also fulfill additional Premier Partner tier requirements that include maintaining a defined number of certified sales and engineering employees.
- Datical, a provider of database release automation offerings, unveiled a partner program with the objective of connecting DevOps vendors and systems integrators. Program features include an online marketplace, access to training and joint marketing opportunities with Datical.
- Pivot3, a hyper-converged infrastructure vendor, said the company witnessed a 178% increase in new deal registrations from channel partners from the first quarter to the third quarter of 2017. In addition, the company said 77 partners have joined the company's channel roster in Q3.
- Kryon Systems, a robotic process automation solutions provider, is partnering with MFX, an IT services provider for property and casualty insurance carriers, reinsurers and agents.
- Ingenico Group, a POS and e-payment company, has selected Masergy, a hybrid networking and managed security provider, for its managed SD-WAN Pro offering.
- World Wide Technology, an IT solution provider, opened a new global headquarters in the Maryland Heights, Mo., a suburb of St. Louis. The facility is 208,000 square feet, and it includes a 300-seat auditorium equipped with an LED screen that's 51 feet by 12 feet.
- BCS ProSoft, a business software and technology consulting firm, has appointed Sally Craig as its vice president of sales and marketing. Craig was previously a channel executive at ERP vendor Epicor.
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