We’ve become accustomed to pre-configured stack of converged infrastructure including servers, storage and networking from the vendor community – VCE and FlexPod jump to mind. But now distribution is getting into the game, as Avnet Technology Solutions introduces six pre-configured converged infrastructure stacks based on HP technology.
The distributor says it has pulled together converged infrastructure systems based on HP ProLiant Gen8 servers, HP networking gear, and HP 3PAR storage, in six different sizes catering to business with needs of deployments from 96 virtual machines to upwards of 300. The company believes that taking an
“We’ve pre-bundled it, made it easier to sell, and made it easier for my partners to focus on adding value around the box,” said Chris Swahn, vice president and general manager of Avnet Technology Solutions’ North American HP business.
Delivery time for one of the bundled SKUs still comes in at three to six weeks, but Swahn said the appliance approach will make it easier for partners to move on to more lucrative aspects of the sales cycle, focusing on what the infrastructure is going to be used for, and not necessarily on defining the infrastructure itself.
While the stacks defined are all fairly horizontal solutions, Swahn suggested that over time, Avnet will develop more specialization within the stacks, introducing specific applications and mapping with the company’s SolutionsPath practices, which introduce VARs to vertical expertise in fields including government, energy, financial services, healthcare, and retail.
With the hardware pre-determined, much of the customization of these converged infrastructure offerings will center around the applications that run on the hardware. The distributor will also work on pre-validated software options for the HP converged infrastructure offering in areas including management and security, key elements of the overall solutions.
“When Avnet’s resellers go out and talk about this, they’re bringing a solution, they’re talking to their customers about their business and how it’s going to evolve,” Swahn said. “That’s a huge opportunity for our partners.”
Converged infrastructure has become particularly key as a hardware driver behind virtualization and cloud. IDC estimates worldwide converged infrastructure sales of $17.8 billion by 2016, growing at a 40 percent CAGR.
“We debate what percentage of our business will end up in converged infrastructure, but we know this: it will be a big percentage,” Swahn said.
The six pre-configured HP converged infrastructure stacks are available now through the distribution to partners in the U.S. and Canada. Swahn said Avnet would move to make the products available beyond the continent in the near future.