Channel's role in the cloud era

Nathan Clements, managing director at Exclusive Networks discusses how the move to cloud is a means to channel evolution, and not its end

Nathan Clements, managing director at Exclusive Networks.
Nathan Clements, managing director at Exclusive Networks.

2019 has been the year of change in the Middle East where ‘Cloud’ is concerned. We’ve seen the big Cloud providers enter the market, and from speaking with our partners we’ve heard how their customers from all vertical markets have started their move to Cloud. We’ve seen end users delay hardware renewals and hardware refreshes as they consider the question – ‘Do we buy more of the same, or do we move to Cloud’

I hear constantly that the channel will be obsolete when customers move to the Cloud! That end users will buy all they need directly from Cloud providers. However, the common feedback we hear, from vendors, partners and our colleagues around the globe, is about the lack of knowledge in the market when it comes to moving from ‘on-prem’ to ‘off-prem’. We’ve all read about the skills shortage in both Cyber and Cloud.

This is where the channel will always have a place in the supply chain. Where there is complexity and uncertainty there is a need for a trusted advisor.

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At Exclusive Networks, I am confident that we have chosen the best in breed vendors in Cyber Security and Cloud Transformation – we have grown our business by 53% this year, a testament to the relevance of the vendors we work with. This has coincided with the launch of our ‘Cloud Competency Centre’, where we are delivering authorized, vendor and cloud-agnostic training courses to our customers – to help fill the skills shortage, and to empower our channel to have the confidence to engage in conversation with their customers on Cloud transformation.

Is the channel going to be obsolete? Of course not!! Not for those who evolve, and dare to differentiate. And on this theme, I’m excited to announce our involvement in GITEX this year. A wise philosopher once said ‘the definition of insanity is doing the same things over and over again and expecting different results’. So this year we have decided we will not exhibit ourselves on a stand, as we have done multiple years running.

This year Exclusive Networks and its vendors will be present at Cubano Lito for 2 days, a short 2-minute walk from the GITEX halls.

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