IT Pro is supported by its audience. When you purchase through links on our site, we may earn an affiliate commission. Learn more
In-depth

Cyxtera eyes Europe in new channel push

Channel Pro speaks to the company's SVP of channel about its plans for the territory

Although the political situation within the EU and UK has put some companies off investing in the region, secure infrastructure and colocation firm Cyxtera has decided to take the plunge and expand its channel partner network in the European market.

The decision follows the opening of two new European data centres this year – one in Frankfurt and one in Amsterdam – as well as the expansion of an existing facility in London.

Tina Gravel, senior vice president of global channel at the company, tells Channel Pro this latest push in the region is far from impulsive and follows a period of consolidation focused on its home market of the USA.

"I took on the channel when we formed two years and what I shared with the management team... is that obviously I wanted to make sure that we got things right in the US where I have a lot of control and access."

Cyxtera's background isn't exactly simple – created from the fusion of four cyber security companies owned by Medina Capital and 57 data centres carved out of CenturyLink, Tina was faced with the task of bringing together five separate channel programmes. Among other things, this included standardising contracts, processes and programmes.

The result is a single channel programme with what Gravel describes largely as "very standard" features. There is one element that Cyxtera believes is somewhat more unique, though.

"We're seeing a morphing of the value-added resellers moving into more of a systems integrator sort of profile," says Gravel. "There's a lot of changes and alterations happening.

"And so our program has flexibility in it to accommodate these new things. We also have what I would call more of a 'plan ahead' marketing development funds. Traditionally, marketing development funds come after you sold something – they are normally provided as a percentage of sales to keep you selling and to help you with your marketing. Because [our] products are new and have not been adopted yet by everyone in the channel ... we're advancing those funds so that we can get folks selling and trained more rapidly than we might have had to in the past," she says.

Now, two years after Cyxtera was formed and one year after an initial "soft launch" in Europe, it has staged the official full launch of its partner programme in the region.

The company has lined up a mixture of local distributors and resellers in Europe, as well as building on relationships with existing American partners that also operate here, such as Megaport.

"There's quite a few distributors that we see in the US that we've talked to about extending our reach over here, including a smaller distributor called Avant – they're one of our key partners in the US and so we're expanding our reach with them. Another is a managed service provider called Unitas Global, and then there's local companies such as Softcat," Gravel explains.

While Cyxtera does the vast majority of its business through the channel, it does have a direct sales team and assigns a direct sales person to every opportunity brought in through the channel.

"We believe that the best way for our partners to know how to sell our product, is to have some supervision or cooperation with our direct team," says Gravel, explaining that this is in large part a result of the company's heritage.

"Being a young company and having things that are really refreshing and new to the business, like the on-demand colocation and this product Appgate, most of the folks that used to sell colocation are not used to selling these innovations, so there is some heavy lifting and hand holding, if you will, that we do and we're happy to do it. We probably won't have to do that forever, but it makes very good sense for us to do it today."

It's a strategy that has worked so far: Since launch, Cyxtera has grown 50% year-on-year. And with its new focus on the channel in Europe, this success looks set to continue.

Featured Resources

Four strategies for building a hybrid workplace that works

All indications are that the future of work is hybrid, if it's not here already

Free webinar

The digital marketer’s guide to contextual insights and trends

How to use contextual intelligence to uncover new insights and inform strategies

Free Download

Ransomware and Microsoft 365 for business

What you need to know about reducing ransomware risk

Free Download

Building a modern strategy for analytics and machine learning success

Turning into business value

Free Download

Recommended

Google unveils new Assured Open Source Software service
open source

Google unveils new Assured Open Source Software service

18 May 2022
Malwarebytes hires new channel chief to lead MSP and partner network
Managed service provider (MSP)

Malwarebytes hires new channel chief to lead MSP and partner network

18 May 2022
Palo Alto and Deloitte to deliver managed security services in the US
Managed service provider (MSP)

Palo Alto and Deloitte to deliver managed security services in the US

17 May 2022
US and EU thrash out plans to avert chip production “subsidy race”
Hardware

US and EU thrash out plans to avert chip production “subsidy race”

17 May 2022

Most Popular

Russian hackers declare war on 10 countries after failed Eurovision DDoS attack
hacking

Russian hackers declare war on 10 countries after failed Eurovision DDoS attack

16 May 2022
Researchers demonstrate how to install malware on iPhone after it's switched off
Security

Researchers demonstrate how to install malware on iPhone after it's switched off

18 May 2022
Windows Server admins say latest Patch Tuesday broke authentication policies
Server & storage

Windows Server admins say latest Patch Tuesday broke authentication policies

12 May 2022