Vendor pledges expansion of sustainability-focused partner, new partner training and community hub at Amplify Executive Forum.
HP hosted a select group of its top partners from the Americas last week, offering a preview of what the channel can expect from the vendor in the future.
Kobi Elbaz, senior vice president and general manager of global channels for HP, hosted the first of three HP Amplify Executive Forums near its Palo Alto, California headquarters last week, praising partners for their role in HP’s growth and sharing his team’s plans to keep that growth going.
HP’s partners have driven a total of $6 billion (U.S.) in growth for the company over its last four reported quarters, Elbaz told attendees. That figure does not include its third quarter of 2022, reported on August 30.
“Think about that — that’s just growth, and that’s bigger than half of the Fortune 500,” Elbaz said. “We are a channel-driven company as part of our DNA.”
That’s the message the HP channel team brought to Palo Alto and will take to similar Amplify Executive Forums in Dubai and Amsterdam.
It’s been two years since the launch of Amplify in August 2020, and Elbaz said 95 percent of the company’s partners are now part of the program.
“You all embraced a one-of-a-kind global partner program at a very interesting time, to say the least,” he said.
As well as offering its top partners a firm pat on the back for what they’ve done, Elbaz offered some previews of new partner programs HP hopes will keep that growth number climbing and pointed partners towards several critical opportunities in the market.
A vital element of the Amplify launch was a sub-program dubbed Amplify Impact, which measures and incentivizes sustainability efforts on the part of partners. Elbaz said that today, that program includes more than 10,000 partners in 43 countries, and Elbaz said the company’s goal is to have more than half of the company’s total partner base in the program as it expands Impact worldwide over the next two years.
“We want to be the most sustainable company in the world,” Elbaz said.
Another central tenet of the switchover to the Amplify program was a focus on data, with HP providing more information to partners and expecting more information from partners. He acknowledged the move was “controversial” but praised partners for getting “really good in sharing data with us” and working with HP to establish the trust needed for such transparency.
He repeatedly stressed that “data is a journey” for the company and its partner base and detailed efforts to make the collection and sharing of information more automated, providing account-specific insights to partners and integrating with partner CRM systems.
“Partners who are investing in using the data are growing at twice the rate of those who aren’t,” Elbaz said.
Elbaz also previewed what he called a “new engagement platform” for partners. Dubbed Curiocity — odd spelling intentional — Elbaz described it as a hub for all HP training and new product information and engaging with the HP partner team and their peers in the partner community. He also hinted at gamification of the site, saying partners will be able to “build your city through growth” with HP via Curiocity.
In terms of opportunities, Elbaz focused on subscriptions. The vendor’s often-lauded move “from transactional to contractual” started with managed print over the last decade, with desktop-as-a-service joining in the latter half of the 2010s. Those grew nicely until the pandemic came and poured gasoline on the fire.
“It accelerated demand in corporate and SMB with the move to work-from-home and the need to support people all over the place,” Elbaz told partners, urging them to think about how they can support those hybrid workers using the data telemetry and predictive analytics that many business-grade HP PCs and printers offer today.
“Use HP telemetry to provide lifecycle services in a more efficient way,” he told attendees.
Although it remains a tough fit for much of the business-to-business channel community, Elbaz also pushed partners to consider growth opportunities around gaming. “You’re going to see a lot more announcements for things around the [gaming] systems,” Elbaz told partners, stressing that gamers need not only high-end systems but also “the best monitors, the best accessories.”
HP, of course, has a couple of gaming-focused PC lineups, including Omen and Victus, and has expanded its presence in the gaming peripherals space with its recent purchase of HyperX.
On a similar note, Elbaz told partners HP would be scaling its Amplify Online program for e-commerce sites down from the big e-tail players to smaller online retailers. He stressed the need for HP and online sellers to collaborate smoothly around data, optimize the sellers’ digital presence selling HP wares and optimize search marketing that brings in buyers. While the program is primarily about helping existing online sellers optimize their HP business, he stressed HP is also designing the program to help onboard partners new to selling online.