First Distribution has been selected as this year’s Microsoft CSP Indirect Provider Of The Year. The prestigious award keeps in mind the challenges over the financial year 2022 alongside numerous implications on the partner ecosystem that they managed to top. Focusing on building their alliance with partners across the African continent, the organisation invested heavily in partnerships, providing value and market differentiation.
A pioneer in the provision of cloud services to the South African and African channels having been around since 1984, they have grown from their core IBM business to offering a massive product range that covers data centres, networking, security, data security, and the Internet of Things (IoT).
First for Cloud, First Distribution’s platform is an aggregated marketplace with 7,500 products built on the Epsidon Cloud foundation. It is a white-labelled service provided to partners allowing them to accelerate their cloud journey, leveraging it to sell their products or portfolios. The marketplace is available to all First Distribution’s partners throughout Africa. The offering is available in 42 African countries with multi-currency capabilities, including the rand, dollars, naira and shillings with a full-blown multi-currency ICT aggregated marketplace.
All reseller partners have unique capabilities with areas of specialisation but are unable to supply every service their customer wants. This is when leveraging a community of partners offers a wealth of third-party services. The result is a consortium offering services on behalf of other partners that First Distribution vets and quality controls all the services offered on GoFirst Cloud. When the specialist partner is performing the service, they wear the contracting partner’s hat, so as far as the customer is concerned, they are working with their chosen partners. It builds vertical offerings on a business-to-business (B2B) level, evangelising on behalf of channel partners.
Partners can now populate their web store with services and solutions their customers may want, and when the customer clicks on them, that service will be performed by the specialist partner. It has created a services community with partners regularly supplying services to others. Services on offer include data management, archiving and data recovery, Office 365 migration, Azure assessments or deployments, and security deployments at the partner level to Teams services.