Since being selected by Microsoft Canada last year to roll out License Online in Canada, Synnex Canada has attracted more than 350 resellers for its certified Software Advisors program.

Through Synnex and Microsoft’s Open License Value program, VARs are able to offer customers the option to

spread payments for Microsoft software licenses over a three-year period instead of having to pay of it all up front.

Inaddition, Synnex Software Advisors earn fees for their referrals and are able to gain more discounts if they convince customers to commit to Microsoft for all of their desktops.

Synnex Canada’s strategy with the Software Advisiors program is that these resellers play a valuable role and are an influencer in advising customers about software licensing.

“”This is one of the benefits,”” said John McLean, vice-president of sales for Synnex Canada of Toronto. “”Microsoft has also enhanced the program to include help desk support, which adds value to the program verses Open License. Clearly, there is a financial benefit with discounts that are not available in Open License,”” McLean added.

One of the obstacles of Microsoft licensing in the past was that IT projects were put on hold because companies would have to wait until they had the full payment available for the Microsoft license.

With this new plan in place, more IT projects have commenced than put on hold, McLean said.

However, he added that this is a targeted program towards small-to-medium sized businesses in Canada as opposed to large enterprises. “”So yes, there is a high number of transactions, but overall the revenue is low,”” McLean said.

The program is designed for companies with as few as five and up to 250 desktops.

Synnex Canada’s software business has become an important part of the distributor’s bottom line, McLean said. And, he sees the number of resellers in the Software Advisors program growing exponentially.

According to the distributor, software represents 20 per cent of channel sales overall and that Synnex software business has done much better than the 20 per cent overall figure.

“”The end result is Microsoft moves a lot of its business through this program, which defrays the licensing costs and adds value. I think it will snow ball and maybe not all of the business will go through this model, but it is growing fast. Microsoft has 1,300 channel partners through this plan,”” he said.

Synnex Canada will also announce later on this year a new electronic interface for Open License Value for its order entry program. “”We will continue to work on our e-commerce tools to support the way we do business,”” McLean said.

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