Canalys Leadership Matrix APAC H2 2018

Tuesday, December 18 2018

Fujitsu and NetApp have become Canalys Leadership Matrix champions for the first time. Fujitsu made considerable improvements in its partner programs and formed tighter relationships with partners across the APAC region. While NetApp recently announced a strategic partnership with Lenovo that should benefit its partners in the long run. APC by Schneider, Cisco, Dell EMC, HP, VMware and Veeam must be congratulated for the impressive feat of keeping their Champions' crowns. Cisco, Dell EMC and HP – three of the top six most important vendors in terms of channel revenue in APAC – all contributed to substantial growth for the channel over the last 12 months.

The Leadership Matrix combines partner feedback from Canalys' unique Vendor Benchmark tool with an independent assessment by Canalys analysts of each vendor's momentum in the channel, based on their investments, strategy improvements and execution. Champions have the highest scores in the Canalys Vendor Benchmark and exhibit some common characteristics: ongoing improvements in channel processes to drive simplicity and ease of doing business; investments in programs; and a demonstrable commitment to growing the share of revenue generated through partners. They must also make sustainable investments in the future of their channel models.

With competition for the attention of the most successful channel partners intensifying, established channel vendors can no longer afford to be complacent. This should come as a wake-up call to vendors falling into the "Straggler" quadrant at the other end of the spectrum – Acer, AppleExtreme Networks, Fortinet, McAfee, Juniper Networks, Kaspersky Lab and Veritas. Extreme Networks and McAfee continue to face pressure from partners as these vendors failed to escape the "Straggler" quadrant. 

"Growers" have seen some of the strongest improvements in partner perception over the last 12 months, albeit with lower scores than "Champions". Lenovo and IBM have benefited from their investments in operational improvements, simpler processes and more attractive financial incentives, as well as stronger commitment to their partners. Similarly, Huawei is slowly reaping the benefits of its improved partner strategy as it has recruited key distributors and partners in the APAC region, despite still having a low rating.

The remaining vendors tracked in the Canalys Leadership Matrix are classified as "Contenders". These vendors are still rated highly by partners, but their ratings have stagnated or declined over the last 12 months. Microsoft's rating remains relatively high, but has declined. It is the most important vendor to the APAC channel in terms of overall revenue share, but remains a complex vendor to work with due to frequent changes in partner programs. Hewlett Packard Enterprise dropped from "Champion" to "Contender", mainly due to the internal changes which saw the APAC region split into three and many personnel leave channel leadership roles. Citrix, Palo Alto Networks, Symantec and Trend Micro round up the "Contenders" quadrant. These vendors remain important to the channel and have high scores, but need to improve further on their execution if they are to achieve Champion status.

About the Canalys Leadership Matrix: The Leadership Matrix assesses vendor performance in the channel, based on channel feedback into the Vendor Benchmark over the last 12 months and an independent analysis of vendor channel strategy, investment, execution and planned initiatives by experienced Canalys analysts. The Vendor Benchmark tracks leading technology vendors around the world, collating the experiences that channel partners have when working with different vendors. Channel partners are asked to rate their vendors across the 10 most important areas of channel management.

The Canalys Leadership Matrix provides a graphical representation to assess the performance of each vendor over time and positions them in one of four categories:

  • Champions: Vendors with high vendor benchmark scores that have shown both continued improvement in channel management, strategy and execution, and a commitment to driving future improvements.
  • Contenders: Vendors with high vendor benchmark scores, but have seen declines in channel sentiment and/or a deterioration in channel commitment or execution.
  • Growers: Vendors with low vendor benchmark scores, but have seen improvements in channel sentiment and performance.
  • Stragglers: Vendors with low vendor benchmark scores that have seen channel sentiment and/or performance deteriorate or stagnate.


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