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ShoreTel Tours Asia Pacific to Update Channel Partners

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ShoreTel product management directors Rich Winslow and Ed Wright and channel programs director Jeff Mattan hit the skies cramming a tour of 5 countries in 10 days across Asia Pacific (APAC).  Our APAC channel community of systems integrators, business partners and distributors flew in to hear the ShoreTel executive team discuss the company’s UC market leadership, product roadmap and details of the expanded Champion Partner Program.

Jamie Romanin, managing director of ShoreTel ANZ, took to the stage first, sharing local insights into the trends that are shaping our industry from UC in the cloud to virtualisation. Partners were motivated by the opportunity ShoreTel is giving Australian and New Zealand organisations to choose if they own and manage their brilliantly simple system in-house (on-premises), or let ShoreTel/its partners handle it off-site (hybrid or hosted). Partners considered the opportunity to evolve their own business models to offer a range of UCaaS solutions to their customers.

ShoreTel then invited renowned guest speaker Moheb Moses, founder of Channel Dynamics, to discuss market readiness for UC in the cloud and the 12 steps channel businesses need to take to adapt to this changing consumption model. Notably the Asia Pacific marketplace is markedly different to other regions where just 33 percent of Australian business will be using cloud or hybrid cloud for enterprise communications and collaboration by 2017 (Telsyte, ‘Australian Enterprise Communications Market Study 2014’). Moheb challenged partners to consider if they had the systems and processes in place to offer a monthly recurring revenue solution to and if not, what it would take to get there.

We then welcomed commentary from our global product team - Rich Winslow and Ed Wright - who talked deep-dive features and functionality of ShoreTel 14.2, our virtualisation strategy and what this means for customers. The application roadmap and ShoreTel’s vision around UC, mobility and contact centre technologies sparked plenty of interest from the ANZ channel. To keep the Australian crowd engaged, Ed introduced himself as an American cricket fan (unheard of!) who supports England (translation: this equates to standing in a room full of Yankee fans and announcing you are a Red Sox fan. It’s a brave move). Ed lived to tell the tale and the interaction became more lively as the morning continued.

Lead by Jeff Mattan, we also had a deep-dive discussion around the updated ShoreTel Champion Partner Program – partners asked plenty of questions to ensure they completely understand how ShoreTel is supporting them to be profitable and successful in APAC.

After Auckland and Sydney, the team flew to Melbourne for the final city in the ANZ leg, then flew to Manila over the weekend where they were joined by Pej Roshan, VP of product management, and Bruce Downing, managing director of Asia and South Africa. In Manila the team presented to 60 partners then on to Kuala Lumpur and Malaysia for separate sessions with both partners and end-users, before the final event in Singapore on Valentine’s Day.

By the time the ShoreTel APAC channel roadshow is complete, we’ll have conducted 7 half day events, in front of nearly 300 customers and partners across the region, along with 4 media interviews, 2 analyst briefings, an executive dinner for customers and key partners, and a 20:20 cricket game also attended by an English fan masquerading as an American. It was extremely beneficial for our partners and customers!