Trend Toward Converged IT Systems Spells Big Opportunity for APC by Schneider Electric Partners

The market for converged IT infrastructure is hot because the idea presents a lot of tangible benefits to end user organizations. And as is so often the case, that also spells plenty of opportunity for APC™ by Schneider Electric partners.

Converged IT infrastructure refers to systems that combine server, storage and networking components with management software in one integrated package. In its latest report on the market, from December 2015, IDC says the worldwide market for converged systems increased 6.2% year over year, to $2.5 billion during the third quarter of 2015.

IDC breaks the market down into three segments, as follows:

  • Integrated systems are pre-integrated, vendor-certified systems containing server hardware, disk storage systems, networking equipment, and basic element/systems management software.
  • Certified reference systems are pre-integrated, vendor-certified systems containing server hardware, disk storage systems, networking equipment, and basic element/systems management software. Certified reference systems, however, are designed with systems from multiple technology vendors.
  • Hyperconverged systems collapse core storage and compute functionality into a single, highly virtualized solution. A key characteristic of hyperconverged systems that differentiate these solutions from other integrated systems is their ability to provide all compute and storage functions through the same server-based resources.

IDC goes on to note that of the three segments, hyperconverged solutions are seeing the largest share of growth (see chart). But no matter which form the technology takes, there’s no getting around the fact that the equipment has to live in some sort of rack or enclosure. And it just so happens that APC has relationships with many of the leading vendors in the converged infrastructure market.

That means our racks, enclosures, PDUs and UPSs are already certified to work with converged infrastructure from these vendors, which include Cisco, Dell, HP, EMC and NetApp. In short, we are part of their partner ecosystem, and vice versa. That means you, as an APC partner, are part of that ecosystem, too.

The opportunity around converged infrastructure is significant because of the nature of the infrastructure. The whole idea behind it is to pack a lot of IT resources into a small space, to save valuable data center real estate and to make the infrastructure easier to manage.

IT folks know that when you pack a lot of IT capacity in a confined space you have to take steps to ensure it has sufficient power and is properly cooled. Power and cooling, of course, have been APC mainstays for decades.

In fact, you will likely find that many customers looking to install converged infrastructure are already APC customers. They trust our racks, UPSs and PDUs. More than likely, they will be happy to hear that those very same products have been certified to work with converged infrastructure including the EMC VSPEX reference architecture, FlexPod from Cisco and NetApp and more. What’s more, they may well be interested in using our StruxureWare software to help manage it along with the rest of their data center infrastructure.

And if you’re a partner with Cisco, Dell, HP, EMC or NetApp, you’ll be happy to know that you may be eligible for an additional 5% margin on any APC products you sell as an add-on to their products, through the APC Attach Incentive Program (AIP).

As IDC makes clear, companies are implementing converged infrastructure in a big way and APC is partnered with many of the leaders in the space. That’s an opportunity that’s not to be missed for our partners.

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