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Ciena revamps global partner program

BizConnect program expanded and enhanced to reflect changing partner requirements

Ciena's expanded partner program includes new designations and other enhancements.
Ciena's expanded partner program includes new designations and other enhancements.

Network specialist Ciena has announced an overhaul of its global partner program.

The BizConnect program will be expanded and enhanced, to improve the ability of channel partners to provide high performance networks to sectors such as network operators, utilities, financial services firms and other verticals.

The program will now include new partner designations and a richer partner ecosystem. Ciena will also introduce new partner tools such as customized marketing programs, technology certifications, and product and industry knowledge resources.

Ciena has around 200 partners worldwide, and the acquisition of Nortel's Metro Ethernet Networks (MEN), has grown its partner base considerably. One-third of Ciena's partners are designated as Managed Service Provider partners and two-thirds are Solution Provider partners, and the company has introduced two new designations, Technology Alliance and Strategic Alliance, to reflect increased focus on collaborating with hardware vendors, independent software vendors and service providers on joint solutions for customers.

The program also includes Gold, Platinum and Diamond levels of partner, and allows partners to tailor their engagement based on their business strategy. The program includes targeted lead-generation campaigns, market development funds, co-branded events and seminars, joint collateral development and innovative media vehicles, and pre-and-post sales support.

"Years of strong organic growth combined with a significant acquired base of partners made this the ideal time to roll out an even more comprehensive set of benefits within our BizConnect program," said Theresa Caragol, vice president, global alliances & partners at Ciena.

"The enhancements to BizConnect differentiate Ciena in the channel by moving past the typical metrics of total number of partners to a more meaningful view of cultivating and supporting an active, engaged and committed community of partners that is dedicated to delivering market-leading converged optical and Ethernet solutions to their customers," she added.

"Ciena has been the ideal partner in our information infrastructure business, combining the right products, marketing programs and support to help us capitalize on this growing market opportunity," said Deirdre Wassell, director of solutions and technical marketing at EMC. "As a BizConnect Technology Alliance Partner, we are able to collaborate and combine our thought leadership and technologies into customer solutions that address the significant storage, virtualization and connectivity opportunities arising from the growth of cloud infrastructure, data centres and intelligent networks within the enterprise."