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Global Reach, Streamlined Sales: IBM Expands Software Sales on AWS Marketplace

Over the past four years, the IBM-AWS partnership has evolved into a unique success story. Unlike many other collaborations, this partnership is a complete 360-degree relationship, encompassing a wide range of collaborations. These two tech giants have achieved remarkable milestones in a relatively short timeframe. IBM Consulting, for instance, boasts an impressive number of AWS certifications (over 23,000) and competencies (19). They are also working together on the cutting-edge field of Generative AI (Gen AI). The partnership has fueled significant growth in adopting Red Hat Open Shift on AWS (ROSA), a native service within the AWS console, proving instrumental in IBM's hybrid cloud strategy. This strategy prioritizes co-existence between cloud and mainframe environments. The focus on collaboration extends to mainframe application modernization, where IBM and AWS have developed valuable patterns that showcase the combined power of these technologies. Additionally, a clear roadmap has been established for watsonx on AWS, with integrations underway with SageMaker, Bedrock, and other AWS products to accelerate Gen AI development and generate a wealth of practical use cases.

The partnership extends beyond just collaboration on specific technologies. IBM software is experiencing a surge in popularity on the AWS platform, with 29 products now available as-a-service offerings. This is part of a larger picture that includes 29 IBM software products and 44 transactable marketplace listings on AWS. The resell model for these offerings has also seen expansion, now encompassing five countries: the US, France, Germany, Denmark, and the UK. Furthermore, a two-tiered distribution model has been established in these countries with industry leaders like Ingram Micro, TD Synnex, and Arrow, further strengthening the reach of these combined solutions. Notably, a significant portion of IBM's partners are already established AWS partners. These partners recognize the value proposition of adding IBM solutions to their offerings, creating a win-win situation for all parties involved – IBM, AWS, and their partners, who can now deliver even more comprehensive solutions to their customers.

In the latest move, IBM and AWS have announced a strategic partnership that promises to reshape the landscape of AI and data technology. This alliance will provide partners and clients unprecedented access to advanced technologies, opening up new avenues for growth and innovation. The collaboration between these two tech giants means clients will now have enhanced access to IBM's robust AI and data platforms through AWS's expansive marketplace. This integration allows for the seamless adoption of sophisticated tools to drive business transformation. With IBM's technology becoming available on AWS, the marketplace is poised to expand significantly. Partners can leverage this opportunity to offer a broader range of services and solutions, catering to the diverse needs of businesses across various industries. The synergy between IBM's AI and data expertise and AWS's cloud infrastructure is expected to deliver enhanced business value. Clients can expect more efficient operations, improved customer experiences, and the ability to tap into new markets, thanks to the comprehensive solutions provided by this partnership.

The IBM-AWS partnership is more than just a collaboration; it's a fusion of strengths that will empower partners and clients. As the partnership evolves, we can anticipate a wave of innovation that will lead the way in AI and data technology, ultimately benefiting businesses around the globe.

Building on the strong foundation of the IBM-AWS partnership, IBM is now expanding its reach with AWS. This expansion enables IBM sellers to sell IBM software in 92 countries through the AWS Marketplace. AWS offers attractive value propositions for IBM, such as the amount of committed spending and over 330,000 clients, which is crucial for IBM's goal to acquire new clients and partners. This expansion empowers IBM sellers, transforming them into global ambassadors for IBM software. No longer limited by geographical boundaries, they can now extend their reach across more countries, all through the familiar and trusted platform of the AWS Marketplace. But what makes this collaboration genuinely innovative? One of the biggest challenges was navigating the complexities of international sales. Traditionally, local entities must handle taxes and remittances, creating a logistical nightmare for widespread operations. To overcome this challenge, IBM and AWS devised a brilliant solution. Imagine a bridge connecting IBM (US-based) to AWS (US-based). This bridge facilitates transactions, allowing IBM to sell directly to AWS and handle all the global tax and remittance headaches.

Final Techaisle Take

As per Techaisle research, customers are opting for hybrid environments aligned with their evolving needs instead of turnkey systems. This shift is necessitating an accelerated frequency of ecosystem participation. Multi-party collaboration is becoming a critical strategic competency, not an opportunistic response to a non-standard solution requirement. Pursuing this ecosystem business approach requires changes in go-to-market strategies, such as complementary skills and an ability to integrate around data rather than physical system components. Ecosystem alliances have become non-optional and essential in the survival kit, requiring shared investment in a customer-centric partner ecosystem.

According to Techaisle’s Partner Trends Survey in March 2024, which covered 2115 partners, 49% of partners are already active in Cloud Marketplaces and plan to boost their participation. And 21% of IBM partners are planning to increase their investments in Cloud Marketplaces. Out of those who are participating, 60% of partners are on AWS Marketplace, and 26% are getting most of their revenue from there. The main reason is that 62% of customers are using Cloud Marketplaces, and 38% of them are raising their spending on AWS Cloud Marketplace, as per Techaisle’s Midmarket Cloud adoption trends research in April 2024 with 2100 firms. The reasons range from accessing innovative solutions, centralized access and management, easy and centralized billing, and pre-validated solutions.

This enhanced partnership between IBM and AWS represents a commitment to a customer-centric approach. IBM remains steadfast in its dedication to a hybrid and open philosophy. IBM believes in meeting customers on their terms, offering them the flexibility to procure IBM technology in the way that best suits their needs. For those customers already heavily invested in AWS, this expansion provides a seamless path to integrate industry-leading IBM software solutions into their existing infrastructure.

Cloud Marketplaces will be a vital link in the customer’s buying journey. Buyers will have access to a curated codebase that provides some expectation of security and interoperability. Cloud marketplaces will help IT staff manage the ingestion of new software capabilities, and the effective use of cloud marketplaces will contribute to agility and cost control. Both partners and marketplace operators will build and manage relationships, plug into sales and marketing programs, drive investment in the implementation and support for end-users, and fund all of this on a fraction of the monthly fee associated with each service sold.

This strategic expansion of the IBM-AWS partnership of delivering through the AWS marketplace signifies a win-win for both parties. It unlocks new growth opportunities for IBM and AWS while delivering a more convenient and efficient buying experience for customers.

ibm aws partnership expansion

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