Tech Data: A Vital Link to the Future of Channel

Tech Data, a leading company, being 45 years in IT distribution and ranked 88 on the Fortune 500 with its recent step towards strengthening next- generation technology offerings, is focusing on security, analytics and IoT solutions. SME Channels spoke to the Country General Manager of Tech Data, Sundaresan Kanappan, to know about its strategy.

From the smart phone in a user’s hand to complex solutions powering a global enterprise, Tech Data connects the world with the power of technology. Our end-to-end portfolio of products, services and solutions, highly specialized skills and expertise in next-generation technologies enable channel partners to bring to market the products and solutions the world needs to connect, grow and advance.As the world’s leading end-to-end technology distributor, we put singular focus on our partners’ needs and goals with the objectivity of a true strategic partner. With reach, capabilities and resources that span the technology continuum, we are a vital link in the IT channel, delivering the insights and optimized solutions our channel partners depend on to compete in the market today, tomorrow and into the future.

Year of establishment:

Tech Data Corporation – 1974 ·

Tech Data in India – 2009

Tech Data has 14 offices in India with Innovation Centers in Mumbai and New Delhi. Our solutions portfolio spans across data center, cloud, security, analytics and IoT, mobility, and education, from the world’s leading vendors.


  • 45 years in IT distribution
  • $37.2 billion in sales for fiscal 2019
  • Publicly Traded (NasdaqGS: TECD)
  • Ranked No. 88 on the FORTUNE 500 ·
  • 125,000+ IT reseller customers
  • 150,000+ IT products sold · 100+ countries served
  • 14,000+ employees worldwide ·
  • Named One of FORTUNE’s “World’s Most Admired Companies”

What Are the Core Strengths and USP Of Tech Data vis-à-vis the Competition?

Tech Data’s position at the center of the IT channel positions us to serve traditional and born-in-the-cloud vendors, conventional partners, new partners such as ISVs and MSPs. This partner ecosystem together with our innovative digital platforms like StreamOne Cloud Marketplace and our eCommerce platform, Shop give us high value-added capabilities to deliver next-generation solutions that enable our channel partners to scale in multiple markets serving a multitude of end-customer needs.

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“With our unique mix of in-house capabilities, market-leading partnerships and the world’s best technology products, we’re committed to providing inventive solutions to help partners around the world move beyond the status quo and gain a true competitive advantage in the marketplace”

Sundaresan Kanappan,
Country General Manager,
Tech Data.


With our unique mix of in-house capabilities, market-leading partnerships and the world’s best technology products, we’re committed to providing inventive solutions to help partners around the world move beyond the status quo and gain a true competitive advantage in the marketplace.

Tech Data recently took another important step in strengthening our next-generation technology offerings with the formation of two new global practices. One focused on security solutions, the other focused on analytics and IoT solutions. These global practices bring together subject matter expertise from across our business to build on our current offerings and allow us to further accelerate our next-generation technology value proposition across regions.

What are the Next-Gen Generation Technologies you have adopted to make your Processes Swift and Quick for the Partners?

In April, 2018, Tech Data introduced our StreamOne Cloud Marketplace to our Indian partners. The provisioning, billing and end-user lifecycle management digital platform allows partners to scale, launch and manage a broad range of cloud services, including Software as a Service (SaaS), Infrastructure as a Service (IaaS) and Platform as a Service (PaaS). It also enables partners to deliver advanced offerings such as assessment, migration, security and monitoring – enabling hassle-free cloud transitions for their customers.

We also introduced a standardized quoting tool for partners, providing quotes in 5 different formats viz. Word, Excel, XML, HTML and PDF. Based on the quote generated through the tool, the partner can create an EDI (Electronic Data Interchange) to convert it into Purchase Order.

Next in line is Tech Data’s award-winning eCommerce platform Shop, which will be launching in India this year and will further help our partners unlock high-growth opportunities. The site features a comprehensive online product catalogue, visibility into online orders and quotes, featured promotions and much more.

Are you into Value-Added Distribution Services?

Tech Data’s world-class execution, end-to-end offerings and deep expertise enable our partners to meet their customers’ needs today and provide them access to the innovative technologies of tomorrow.

Tech Data has proven experience and a vast array of solutions across data center and next-generation technologies including:

  • Data Center Solutions: IBM | HPE | NetApp| Lenovo | Oracle | VMware | Citrix | Nutanix
  • Next Generation Solutions: Microsoft Azure | Checkpoint |Barracuda | Cyberbit | Color Tokens| Qlik | Cloudera| Automation Anywhere

Our solutions specialist approach empowers partners with the dedicated resources, sales support and technical expertise needed to transform their business while driving long-term success for themselves and their customers.

What does your Partner Ecosystem Look Like?

Tech Data has large ecosystem of partners that are segmented initially by their market focus. They are segmented into the following categories:

  • Global/ Regional Systems Integrators
  • Resellers / VAR’s
  • Specialty Partners -ISV’s
  • Whitespace

Within these partner classifications are additional opportunities to segment partners further based on a broad range of criteria from vertical to primary solutions resold to specialty expertise. Furthermore, Tech Data is well-aligned to help partners maximize the value they derive from Tech Data offerings based on the segmentation of solutions across our end-to-end portfolio.

What is your Partner Programme Strategy?

We are focused on executing four growth strategies that will ensure Tech Data remains a vital link in the IT ecosystem well into the future:

  1. Investing in next-generation technologies and delivery models
  2. Strengthening our portfolio
  3. Transforming our company digitally
  4. Optimizing our global footprint

These growth strategies are enhanced by our solutions specialist approach which enables our partners to capitalize on the high growth, next-generation technologies that are redefining the future. Partners can engage our dedicated solutions specialists and leverage their in-depth expertise to develop complete data center, cloud, analytics, artificial intelligence, security and the Internet of Things solutions.

What are your Offerings in Cloud, DataCentre, AI, BI, AR, VR, Security, etc.?

# Data Center Solutions

We deliver a broad range of data center solutions across:

  • Servers
  • Storage
  • Networking
  • Infrastructure software
  • Converged and hyper-converged

#Next Generation Solutions


Our partners can get on the fast-track to growing their cloud and managed service business. Our extensive cloud development and integration expertise helps our partners design and build highly-automated and efficient cloud solutions, featuring multi-vendor and multi-platform solutions. We can help our partners:

  • Build a comprehensive cloud services practice: By uniting market-leading cloud services providers, packaged offerings and financial resources, we help enable partners to launch a cloud services practice quickly and confidently.
  • Deliver workload-specific packaged offerings to speed sales and revenue: Understanding the most beneficial workloads to move to the cloud, we offer turnkey cloud-ready solutions that are easy to implement and accelerate sales and revenue.

Tech Data’s StreamOne Cloud Marketplace

Tech Data’s StreamOne Cloud Marketplace (SCM) enables our partners to simplify purchasing and customer subscription management across a broad selection of cloud services from major cloud providers including SaaS, IaaS and PaaS. StreamOne Insights helps partners manage and monitor performance of their client’s cloud services and usage in real time for Office 365 and Microsoft Azure. It also offers advanced services such as assessment, migration, security, and monitoring to make any customer transition to the cloud hassle free.


Leveraging partnerships with best-of-breed security vendors, we create multi-vendor security solutions and services that go beyond endpoint security, to detection and prevention capabilities for partners to offer their customers. With an eye on evolving cyber-security threats and a prescriptive approach to risk mitigation, we provide comprehensive security solutions to help partners protect their customers and reduce vulnerability. We can also help partners develop a successful security practice with comprehensive breach detection and prevention technologies from best-of-breed and emerging suppliers, coupled with our expert security services.


We help our partners to deliver scalable and enduring technology solutions for an easy transition to mobile platforms. We have developed a wide set of mobility-related resources, including sales, pre-sales, solutions offerings and advisory services, to help our partners be successful. We support partners with a broad range of mobility solutions, including mobile application development platforms, enterprise mobility management, mobile enterprise security, and mobility implementation services. In addition, our architects, designers and user-interface experts engage with our partners to create experiences that blur the lines between offline and online channels.

Data Analytics

Tech Data’s data analytics capabilities help our partners manage and improve access to data that captures key business insights and accelerates informed decision making. We address whole business issues, rather than simply pushing products and work with our partners to develop proof-of-concept solutions, allowing partners to see how a solution works before they purchase it.

Internet of Things

We use our 360-degree view of market from the heart of the technology supply chain to create and optimize IoT solutions. Partners can unlock the potential of IoT by leveraging our proven expertise in the critical technologies needed to create complete solutions, including application development and deployment, cloud, components, data analytics, mobility, security and networking, smart objects, and systems infrastructure.

How do you Train your Partners on Various Technologies?

As in the past, we have successfully adopted Tech Data’s Solutions Path framework to enable partners on defined product or solution stack.

We follow below methodology to train our partner across the technology space.

  • Vendor trainings (web-based or ILT) – We assist the partner with the mandatory vendor portal registrations and guide them on the sales and training modules as recommended by the vendor. We also make the partner aware of the training calendar that the vendors roll out.
  • Tech Data led trainings – which our solution specialist team conducts thru webinars and face-to-face sessions. These trainings include right from basic sales orientation sessions to deep dive hands-on workshops involving our Innovation Centre for partner’s sales and technical resources.
  • Boot Camps / Universities – 1 to 2 days focused in-depth training schedules with extremely well-structured agenda. The training is imparted by SMEs from both Tech Data and our vendors. The 2-day program involves individual and group role-playing activities. The University which is one notch higher and advanced also includes pre and post assessment tests. Both the boot camp and university are conducted under Tech Data’s Solutions Path framework.

We also have an education services offering, Tech Data Academy, “Your Best Local Resource for Technical Trainings”. Tech Data Academy provides training courses for vendors like IBM, HPE, VMware, Dell EMC, Microsoft, Citrix, and Veeam to name a few.

What is your Roadmap for 2019?

Our strategy is to move to higher value through investing, strengthening, transforming and optimizing our business and enabling our channel partners to do the same. One key area I’d like to highlight now is digital transformation which is creating immense opportunities for businesses today. Some of the key technologies include big data and analytics, Artificial Intelligence, the Internet of Things and next-generation security. Businesses in India are leading the charge by embracing these technologies to transform their businesses, becoming more efficient and agile and driving high-growth opportunities. One such example is, the government initiative in place to establish 100 smart cities around the country, powered by IT and delivering next generation services, processes and ways of living to residents and companies.

Recognizing these market trends and opportunities, we continuously review and expand upon our portfolio in strategic areas, ensuring we are providing the most comprehensive solutions for our partners. Cloud, analytics, IoT and security, are some of the key areas Tech Data is investing in to capitalize on the immense opportunities that lie ahead.

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