Citrix North American partner of the year XenTegra setting up shop in Canada

Citrix-focused solution provider XenTegra, who just won Citrix's North American partner of the year, is coming into the Canadian market -- at Citrix's request.

Pete Downing, Chief Marketing and Technology Office at XenTegra

SAN JOSE — XenTegra, a Citrix-focused solution provider whose main office is in Charlotte N.C., is coming to Canada. The company won Citrix’s 2019 award for  Worldwide Partner of the Year for the Americas. They are now coming into the Canadian market to bring their enablement-focused business model to the north. They are also a strong IGEL partner, and ChannelBuzz spoke with the company at the IGEL Disrupt summit here about the company and its Canadian plans.

XenTegra is comparatively young as top Citrix partners go, coming up on their eight anniversary. Nor are they a giant in the U.S. that has offices from sea to sea.

“Our main office is in Charlotte N.C., said Pete Downing, Chief Marketing and Technology Office at XenTegra. “We also have an office in Ft. Lauderdale, where Citrix is headquartered, to better align with them. I am building a ‘XenTegra North’ in Boston.

XenTegra’s secret sauce has been their business model, rather than their scale.

“Our CEO, Andy Whiteside was an SE at Citrix, and our philosophy is based on a deep knowledge of the Citrix ecosystem,” Downing said. “We started from the premise that instead of just selling customers Citrix and letting them struggle, we had to actively enable them to work with it, so we lead with education and enablement. I do on average three such event a week, both online and face to face.”

Downing said that XenTegra is able to benefit from Citrix strengthening its position in the desktop space.

“Citrix doesn’t care about the data centre,” he said. “The emphasis is on desktop virtualization and app virtualization and the cloud. VMware has stepped off the gas on the desktop side, and Citrix has stepped on it. VMware’s desktop people don’t stay and they aren’t unseating Citrix in accounts. Citrix has made great strides with Citrix Workspace, and their  analytics now go past VMware. Citrix’s cloud-first mentality and subscription-based licensing also improve their price competitiveness, by making it feasible for people to purchase Citrix with OPEX expenses. Citrix has also levelled the playing field on pricing. I can get the same price as CDW and SHI. So it all comes down to what value you can bring to the customer. You can’t just sell software and leave in that kind of environment. That gives us a significant competitive advantage.”

Citrix apparently agreed with Downing about the value that XenTegra brings to the table, because they asked XenTegra to consider entering Canada.

“We have always had an interest in the Canadian market, but there have been hurdles, such as the need for a brick and mortar location, and the complications of setting up a business entity,” he said. “However after we won the North American Partner of the Year, Citrix asked us to come into the Canadian market. Citrix likes our model, but they also like to have people to have feet on the street who are local.”

Accordingly XenTegra is now working on navigating those hurdles, and Downing is learning a great deal about the intricacies of setting up a business in Canada.

“From our perspective, most of the Citrix prospects in Canada would be midmarket rather than enterprise, but there are a lot of them, and the market is big enough for us to come in,” he said. “We think that our model will be a strong option in Canada, and we will also differentiate in Canada by leading with our enablement methodology. We have consultants based in Canada now.”

For their Canadian office, one logical choice jumps out

“Toronto makes sense,” Downing said.

“Our goal here is to take our brand truly to the Americas,” Downing concluded. “Our goal is simple: grow – but grow smart.”