Cloud: Changing disties too
Exeed is expecting 5% of its revenue for this calendar year to come from cloud offerings, following ‘significant investment’ in a cloud platform – and big interest from resellers.
Justin Tye, Exeed managing director, says the company is now at the production stage of its cloud offering.
“We’re well past investigation of the business model, implementation of infrastructure and setup of operations and billing.
“We’re fully up and running on the platform and have seen very strong interest in the platforms this year, after starting to take orders late last year,” Tye says.
The cloud offering, which goes under the MyCloudStore brand, includes infrastructure-as-a-service – both customer managed or by the provider – back-up for servers and client devices, recovery-as-a-service and cloud security.
“We will be offering managed firewalls and managed wireless infrastructure as well,” Tye says. “We’ve even gone as far as offering cloud migration services through a third party, so if resellers have someone interested, but don’t have the technical resources, we can deliver the service to help customers migrate from on-premises to off.”
Tye says the distributor is looking to add new complementary cloud services, particularly office productivity solutions, in the near future.
Exeed is also offering MyRepublic fibre connectivity which resellers can bundle with devices or do a straight sale of the connection – with ongoing annuity.
“It’s a good recurring revenue stream for resellers to attach to hardware sales, that they wouldn’t have had before, and it helps them defend their account from others,” Tye says.
He says while MyCloudStore was initially an aggregation platform for SMB cloud offerings, ‘rather than a cloud platform’ that’s changed, and the new offering is a true cloud platform.
Tye says the change has been big for Exeed.
“It’s been quite tricky. There were aspects of our core ERP that were not able to handle core aspects of cloud, such as a really good annuity system,” he says.
He notes delivery of cloud services requires ‘quite a bit more’ than just shipping a box out the door with a tracking number and having the reseller set it up and support it, while operations and marketing have also had to change to minimize the risk of churn and maintain a subscription customer base.
Despite the cloud offerings, Tye is adamant the company is not switching its focus away from selling servers.
“We’re simply giving resellers – and their customers – choice. We still ship more to on-premise but we are shifting to more delivery to data centres.
“There is a case for businesses to retain on-premise servers for things like file and print, and I don’t see that changing. For SMBs it’s certainly feasible to put everything in the cloud, but for 30-40 seat organisations and above, I think there will always be servers kicking around on-premise.”