For smaller vendors, of any size, the way to grow is to bundle, partner, bundle, partner. This is not the way for only small vendors, but since they have less funding for direct advertising they need to partner with service providers to increase distribution and/or visibility of their product.
EmergeCore Networks announced its first national Carrier agreement with Electric Lightwave LLC (ELI) of Vancouver, Wash. ELI will provide EmergeCore’s “IT IN A BOX”, (one of my favorite networking appliance) all-in-one network appliance as a value-added service in conjunction with its bundled voice and data Custom T product for small and medium business customers throughout the Western U.S.
IT IN A BOX is in competitive league with Mirra’s Personal Server (sold in retail stores), Microsoft’s Small Business Server, and Nitix)
EmergeCore and ELI’s joint relationship is the first of what analysts are predicting will be many similar ISP and CLEC partnerships moving forward nationwide and internationally over the next several years.
“ELI is an early innovator in what is quickly becoming the future business model for ISPs and CLECs (Competitive Local Exchange Carriers),” said Dave Brown, EmergeCore President and CEO. “As Internet services become a commodity, to aid in customer retention and to retain their competitive advantage, leading providers are turning to new value added services. IT services are the ideal arena for carriers to differentiate themselves with innovative services.”
ELI is predominant in the western United States, with its primary locations serving Portland, Seattle, Spokane, Sacramento, Phoenix, Salt Lake City, and Boise.
“For ELI, this agreement gives us new opportunities to add service value to our growing small business customer base,” said Melinda White, Regional V.P. and General Manager for ELI. “With the success of the IT IN A BOX solution, we consider EmergeCore an ideal partner for ELI as we continue to provide a total communications solution for our customers.”
For small businesses (typically defined as 25 users or less), the Managed Business Server allows ELI’s customers to gain advanced network solutions such as a “wi-fi” wireless access point, file sharing, a router, a four-port switch, a firewall, an FTP server, multiple domains, an e-mail server and VPN services for a single low monthly service fee. In addition to saving the purchase price for the hardware and all of this functionality, ELI’s model allows customers to eliminate the need for costly IT support.
The resulting small business network can support PCs, Macintosh workstations, Unix machines, or any device with an Ethernet or wireless access point, including laptops, Tablet PCs and PDAs. Most recently, EmergeCore also introduced an integrated Customer Relationship Management (CRM) module that is included with the IT In a Box appliances at no extra cost.