Westcon Imagine 2014: Why NZ can capitalise on cloud transformation

“Here it is, it’s in the market, it’s not vapourware, it’s in production and we’re live.”

Alluding to the age-old adage that water runs downhill, new Global General Manager of Westcon Cloud Solutions John McCawley is calling on the New Zealand market to capitalise on the company’s shift to the cloud.

Speaking to Reseller News at Westcon Imagine 2014 in Auckland, McCawley, who joined Westcon Group as part of the Verecloud acquisition last month, says New Zealand’s standing as a leader in cloud innovation represents a unique opportunity for Kiwi partners to position themselves for growth across the region.

“As we begin to expand our digital distribution model across the world, New Zealand resellers and vendors, to the extent they wish to be, will be included in our global portfolio,” he explains.

“New Zealand is laying the groundwork and is a key part of our strategy going forward, which represents a significant opportunity for this market to grow.”

Responsible for the overall Westcon Cloud, Platform, Portfolio, and Go to Market Strategy for Cloud Solutions business across the Westcon lines of business on a global basis, prior to joining Westcon Group, McCawley was the Founder and CEO of Verecloud.

Attending his first Westcon Imagine event, on his first visit to New Zealand, McCawley says the discussions are different on Kiwi shores, with partners “further along the line” in terms of cloud conversations.

“In terms of cloud services, broken down into cloud technology and cloud services, what I’ve noticed is through the talks in New Zealand, resellers are at a greater level of maturity,” he observes.

“We’re talking about cloud services whereas in the US for example, we’re still addressing cloud enabling technologies which is a sign of maturity in relation to New Zealand’s adoption of the cloud.

“It’s a two-way street in New Zealand which is a luxury we don’t quite have yet in other markets such as the US and Europe.

“Of course the US market will definitely benefit from our transformation also, and it is coming - the vendors in aggregate want this, as do the customers so everybody is starting to recognise the world of digital distribution.

“So much so that the big analyst firms have revised their numbers up, not down, because they understand this and you can’t disagree that this is the way distribution is going.”

Echoing McCawley’s comments, Darryl Grauman, Asia Pacific Services and Cloud Solutions Director at Westcon, says the message to the New Zealand market is simple.

“Two years ago I said we were doing something in cloud, last year I said here’s our cloud strategy and today we’re saying we’ve delivered,” he says. “Here it is, it’s in the market, it’s not vapourware, it’s in production and we’re live.”

Since forming a transparent relationship with the company’s cloud service resellers across the country, Grauman says the Kiwi market is aware that it's pioneering and actually setting the strategic standard on a global level, a responsibility he says they are relishing.

“They’re being heard and it’s great,” he adds. “For us it’s different too because we’re now setting ourselves up as an exporter which is something that we’ve never done before.

“It’s new so we’re also learning and that’s exciting for us. Usually we consume stuff as New Zealand but now we have the ability to take it out to the wider global market, which is a great opportunity.”

While working from the standpoint of the resellers, McCawley adds that it also ticks all the right cloud boxes for vendors, vendors which are homegrown in New Zealand and are currently being pushed out to a regional level as the company expands its distribution model around the world.

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