Cradlepoint transforms partner program to emphasize MSPs

The entire program has been formalized to assist global expansion and develop 5G opportunities, but changes have been made to MSP enablement in particular to drive this segment forward.

Tony Puopolo, Vice president of MSP Sales at Cradlepoint

Today Cradlepoint, which is heavily focused on cloud-delivered LTE and 5G wireless network solutions, is announcing major updates for their MSP partners at their North American Partner Summit in Austin, Texas, a two-day event which starts today. The MSP component, which had been managed separately before, has been moved back into the broader program, and the program itself has been upgraded to improve its structure and its ability to provide partners with enablement support.

The old program was in the U.S., but was not in Canada at all.

“In the US a few years ago, we split off our MSP program,” said Tony Puopolo, Vice president of MSP Sales at Cradlepoint. “Doing it the way we have moved to now enables a more structured approach, where we can have a resale and MSP practice both for the same partner. The program enables that.”

Puopolo noted that while in the past, the U.S. had a program, it was not well documented.

“It would be more accurate to call it a framework rather than a full program, he said.”

The decision to upgrade the program came from a culmination of several factors in an environment where 5G is expanding significantly.

“The market is moving towards service providers, and we are growing that segment at our fastest rate ever,” Puopolo said. “Cradlepoint has made a massive bet on the MSP market in the last few years, including the hiring of MSP management specialists. It has become a very substantial part of Cradlepoint’s business. Just in the US alone, we have 20 plus dedicated sales people just to support these partners.”

While the changes to the program make it align more closely with the MSP model, Puopolo doesn’t expect any changes in how resellers go to market or additional competition between partner types as a result.

“We rarely see a big competition from the reseller market to the managed services market,” he said. “It’s more whether the customer wants to outsource it or manage it themselves. We see the managed services more with the larger opportunities.”

The new program is focused on alignment of benefit as well as being more MSP- friendly.

“To take a program globally, the requirements need to be clear, particularly to make sure that reseller and MSP practices properly align for partners who do both,” Puopolo said. “Documented benefits requirements make sure that they align.

The program is also moving from straight deal registration to also having what Cradlepoint calls their MSP Plus program.

“Resellers love deal registration, but MSPs want one price discount across deals,” Puopolo noted.  There is now a new MSP-only subscription model and price list.

Cradlepoint University Training has also been adjusted specifically for the MSP practice.

“A lot of the training was leverageable and we tweaked that for MSPs,” Puopolo said. “We also added new components to support MSP customers.”

Enhancements to NetCloud Manager, Cradlepoint’s cloud management platform , that are exclusive to MSPs are also planned.

“Within NetCloud, MSPs will be able to move devices to any level they want,” Puopolo indicated.

“White glove” logistics support is also being introduced.

“These support parts of an MSP practice where the MSP is not strong and doesn’t do well,” Puopolo said. “This is especially the case if  they are small.”

Fadi Mansour, Channel Sales and Distribution Director, Canada

Fadi Mansour, Channel Sales and Distribution Director, Canada, said that none of these stood out as a particular ‘ask’ for Canadian MSP, but also emphasized that the whole package was exciting for them.

“All these features are exciting for our MSPs,” he said. “Even through this market is not as mature here as it is in the U.S., they have been asking for things that they can plug into. Remember as well that this is all new. The program was just in the U.S. before. It wasn’t in Canada at all.”

In addition to these enhancements, Cradlepoint will develop an MSP Playbook, which will be available in the second half of the year.

“We have had a version of this in the past,” Puopolo said. “It goes through different market opportunities, with a full ROI calculator to help to price it and justify the cost.” Partners will also receive guidance on their market opportunity, use cases and success stories, marketing, sales, training support, and a full program review.

“I’m really excited to formalize all this and take it to Canada,” Mansour said.