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Clearswift re-channels business

01 Mar 2009

Clearswift has announced a major reconstruction of its worldwide channel program and distribution strategy.

Peter Croft, Managing Director ANZ of Clearswift, admitted that previously the company has had a fairly disparate channel strategy. The changes represent a recognition of the primary importance of a solid channel partner program and strategy to the success of any distribution business, in what Croft described as “one of the most comprehensive rebuilds of a channel program I’ve ever seen”.

The channel structure will now be uniform across all territories, with a two-tier strategy that allows for a distributor and reseller model. The new program will offer partners a far more structured and generous set of margins, as well as rebate schemes and market development funds. Rather than taking on a distributor unfamiliar with the strategy and product, the Australia/New Zealand region will continue with a single-tier strategy for the time being, while the company puts the new program in place. Croft added: “We anticipate we are quickly going to get to a point where the number of resellers will outgrow our own capacity for proper management, so we’re going to need a distributor.”

The company currently has six premium resellers and approximately 20 resellers across the region, but is on a strong recruitment drive for more. Clearswift is particularly interested in resellers who are security-savvy, dealing with non-competing technologies and who have a regular account base that they deal with.

Another pivotal element of the new strategy is a complete rebrand and a push to make Clearswift far more visible to the end user, through a print and online campaign. Croft admitted, “In the past we’ve undervalued how channel can assist in our go-to-market strategy” but the company is now keen to redress this. “The whole idea is by driving more business through our channel we are driving more business to us,” Croft continued, stressing the importance of making business models work for the company’s partners.

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