Changes in sales strategy bearing fruit for Veeam

Veeam is also close to announcing the appointment of a new Canadian channel leader, which they think will help enlist some major new partners.

Kevin Rooney, VP of North American Channel at Veeam

On January 1 of this year, Veeam initiated a major restructuring of its internal sales and field resources, as part of its strategy to deepen its penetration in the enterprise space. That shift is already generating results, said Kevin Rooney, VP of North American Channel at Veeam.

The shift saw Veeam add an enterprise sales force for the first time in the company’s history, who work with the company’s channel partners to bring in new enterprise logos.

“We have been changing our field resources from a channel standpoint, pointing them against our resources as a company, to better focus with our partners on those customers we all want to go after,” Rooney said. Whereas before, Veeam allocated its resources by the size of a specific sales opportunity, they have changed it to focus on the size of the company.

Veeam also wants their field resources talking with the top solution providers in their area, and to try and bring them on board if they aren’t presently working with Veeam.

“We want our field resources thinking strategically about the most significant resources in their geography,” he said. “That doesn’t mean just talking with the biggest Veeam partners. It means talking with the most significant partners, whether they are doing business with Veeam now or not. We are now in a position top be at the table with those conversations. We weren’t five years ago. We are now gaining the interest of those significant players.”

That strategy is the same in the U.S. and Canada.

“We have a North American strategy, and are approaching the partner community the same way,  mapping our field resources against those major partners,” Rooney said. “The SMB is still very important to us, but for that ‘tail’ we rely on our distribution partners. That’s something else that we changed starting January 1.”

In the Canadian market, Veeam has the advantage of already being plugged in with all the key corporate resellers.

“Those large seven companies represent a significant part of our business in Canada,” Rooney said.

Rooney also noted that they intend to broaden the channel base in Canada further by bringing on board a new channel leader in Canada, a process of transition that is almost complete.

“We are in the process of hiring a new Canadian channel person, someone who has deep and wide relationships in the Canadian channel, and who can help extend our channel community in Canada,” he said. “That person will be on board and in place by the end of the month.”

Rooney manages the North American component of Veeam’s alliances, and expanding those are a top priority. While Veeam announced several new vendor partnerships at VeeamON, and gave strong attention at the event to partnering efforts with other vendors like Microsoft, HPE and Cisco, they are looking for more.

“I have never worked anywhere like this where we get along with so many people,” he said. “With our shared partners, we can bring something to what they are already selling. The strength we have is that we work very well with everybody. We even work with Dell EMC, even though they have product [Avamar] in our space.”

At VeeamON, Veeam announced new partnerships with smaller companies like StarWind and DataGravity to bring net-new capabilities into Veeam platform, and Rooney said that emphasis will continue, rather than attempt to develop these capabilities internally.

“Our inclination here is to always to look to partner,” he said.

Veeam has also placed a top priority into expanding partner cloud capabilities in order to offer customers the hybrid cloud.

“We are absolutely seeing a transformation towards hybrid cloud right now,” Rooney said. “Hybrid means on-prem AND off-prem. We have Cloud Service Providers that provide that cloud service for us, and if some of our on-prem partners aren’t capable of this, we bring them together and match them up.

Veeam presently has their regular ProPartner channel program, and their cloud partner VCSP program, and while bringing them together would have some advantages in furthering this co-operation, Rooney said it won’t be happening any time soon.

“I think we will see them come together at some stage, but have no idea on the timing,” he said. “There are pluses and minuses to it, although I think there would be benefit in the continuity of the overall program being together. It will happen when it makes sense.”