Finnish mobile phone giant Nokia has signed a distribution deal with pan-EMEA VAD Nuvias as part of a wide strategy to push more sales through the channel and expand its enterprise footprint.
Dave Parker, Nokia's vice president of strategic partners, who joined the mobility firm after it competed the buyout of networking giant Alcatel-Lucent at the start of this year, said that the deal with Nuvias – which owns VADs Zycko, Wick Hill, Siphon Networks, and SCD – reflects the firm's wider ambitions to gain a foothold in various enterprise sectors through a two-tier distribution model.
"Although Alcatel Lucent had success in selling to the high-end enterprise space, it was deemed that the new company together could have the combined focus of engaging that space with a strategy to blow up a number of segments, [those] being transport, energy and public sector," said Parker.
"We started conversations with Zycko about a year ago and we realised they were a high-value specialised two-tier distributor across Europe and we had conversations about the directions they were going in as an organisation. As we became Nokia at the start of the year, these conversations continued. I am really excited now that not only do we have Zycko but, along with Wick Hill in the Nuvias group, we have the capability to augment our overall strategy.
"Nokia is a well-known consumer brand and we believe that gives us a head start from a brand point of view."
Nokia will offer four product categories to the enterprise space through the contract with Nuvias: its IP and optical networking products, software-defined networking solutions, passive optical LAN (POL) products, and its VitalSuite IP address management products.
Nuvias will serve as Nokia's only pan-EMEA distributor, but Parker said that he will look to fill in any geographical gaps in Europe that Nuvias does not cover through local distribution deals.
CEO of Nuvias Paul Eccleston said Nokia's products will be available across Nuvias' entire 5,000-strong network of VARs and resellers. He said, however, that he intends to work closely with a couple of hundred "key partners" to help grow the Nokia brand among enterprises.
"We will closely focus on a much smaller number in the early days, in the hundreds. There is no number by country yet but we are looking to focus very closely on a number of key partners to build a market here with us."
Parker said he aims to have "the majority" of Nokia's enterprise sales go through the channel, of which "a high percentage" will be pushed through a two-tier distribution model.
"This is a logical evolution of the former Alcatel-Lucent strategy. When we came together with Nokia they had a similar view to sell into the enterprise and it came together with no overlap," he added. "The telco market is slowing down and there is significant growth potential in high-end markets with cloud and IoT and mobility; all areas that we [serve] and all areas that Nuvias does as well. The timing is perfect."
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