Avaya Canada team front and centre in development of new Midmarket program

The Avaya Midmarket Select Program is focused on a select number of partners, and lets them allow rock bottom pricing in packages designed to facilitate solution sales. Avaya Canada’s key role in the program’s development has resulted in six of the 40 partners in the global program being Canadian.

Copy of Walter Andri Bio Picture

Walter Andri, President and Managing Director, at Avaya Canada

Avaya has rolled out the Avaya Midmarket Select Program, a new program that will offer a select number of midmarket-focused Avaya channel partners new bundles that offer an ultra-aggressive discount while also stressing the solution sale without the need to reduce it to a line item conversation. The program is also distinct because of the significant role Avaya Canada played in assisting with its development.

“As Canadian leader, I’m very excited to be launching this here in Canada with our Avaya Connect channel partners,” said Walter Andri, President and Managing Director, at Avaya Canada. “This program targets businesses with between 250-2000 employees, which is a sweet spot for Avaya.”

Andri indicated that six partners in Canada have been selected in Canada to participate in the program.

“We have been getting some really strong traction in the few days since the program was released,” Andri said. “We feel these bundles will offer terrific value.”

The selection of six partners from Canada is noteworthy because the target goal for the entire program is to have only around 40 partners globally.

‘We want to increase attention and focus on the midmarket, and want to take advantage of the fact that we have all these pieces, said Scott Shoults, VP Mid-Market, Avaya, whose team has ownership of the program.

“To do this, we began by identifying partners with skills and track record that move in this segment,” Shoults said. They are looking at four criteria: total amount of Avaya business; total amount of telephony and networking business together, total amount of Avaya midmarket business specifically, and total amount of telephony and networking in the midmarket business.

“The program is a two year program, which demonstrates commitment,” Shoults said. “It’s unusual for Avaya programs to be that long.”

Shoults also singled out Andri and his team for their role in the development of the program, which accounts for the proportionally high number of Canadian partners involved out of the gate.

“Walter’s team was actually first to the party in the company, and had the first set of partners ready to go,” he said. “This was a case where the Canadian team dialed in that this would be a valuable program. This is a global program, but the Canadian team set the standard and gave us a lot of feedback early as we developed the program. They were pulling us as much as we were pushing.”

Five bundles, entitled Avaya Select Engagement Packages, are available now and Shoults said more will be offered in the future. They include integrated support services with major software upgrade licenses for Avaya IP Office, video and contact center components. Customers can also choose from a broad range of additional Avaya Professional, Support and Networking managed services. Avaya will also provide increased sales and marketing resources, including training and demand generation support

Two things are noteworthy about these packages – the pricing and the philosophy.

“The discounts will be more aggressive than any discount they can get through their metal stacked with promotions,” Shoults said. “The intent is to provide enough additional discount that they can further reinvest in themselves.”

“We want to offer exceptional value, and the discount is very aggressive to ensure we can do that,” Andri added.

At the same time, Avaya stressed that the program is about much more than just the ability to offer rock bottom pricing.

“There is more to than this than just a discount,” Shoults said. “It can change the way we do business, and bring about a major change to the selling motion. The packages create more than the ability to walk in with the ability to deliver the solution with unmatched pricing. They are more of a solution type sale, which moves customers beyond traditional IT Telephony-type decisions.”

Shoults said that even though Avaya partners, like most of the industry today, focus on solution selling, the reality of the sales motion meant this wasn’t usually the case when in front of the customer.

“Before it was a solution sell that often got reduced to a line item conversation,” he said. “This will change that, and make it unique for the partners.”

Shoults indicated that the decision to limit the program to a select array of partners was motivated by the desire to ensure the program meets objectives. He also said that while the number of partners will likely expand, this won’t ever be a volume program.

“We wanted to make it immediately successful out of the gate,” he said. “We have set the criteria for what it will take to be successful. We do expect the number of partners to grow over the two year span. In Canada, it won’t be a case of we have half a dozen and that’s it.”