Your Network Has Arrived: Microsoft Launches Revamped Partner Network

By Microsoft Corp., PRNE
Sunday, October 31, 2010

Microsoft Partner Network equips partners to transform their businesses and provide greater value and innovation for customers.

REDMOND, Washington, November 1, 2010 - Microsoft Corp. today flipped the switch on the Microsoft Partner
Network, an evolution of the company's industry-leading partner program that
has been two years in the making. The revamped program, which takes effect
today, equips Microsoft partners with the training, resources and support
they need to successfully compete in today's marketplace and allows customers
to easily identify the right partner for their technology needs.


The Microsoft Partner Network is based on partner feedback and customer
demand for specialized service experts. These new offerings will enable
partners to focus on specific technologies that increase the number of
business opportunities, as well as their ability to deliver innovative
solutions that help customers achieve their goals.

"Microsoft's partners are the secret behind our success, and we created
the Microsoft Partner Network to help them achieve their business needs and
drive deeper customer satisfaction," said Jon Roskill, corporate vice
president of the Worldwide Partner Group at Microsoft. "The Microsoft Partner
Network provides partners with the necessary tools, resources and support to
help partners differentiate themselves and succeed in today's market."

"The market we compete in is as dynamic as I've ever seen it, and, to
stay competitive, we have to be very responsive to customers' needs," said
Zikria Syed, CEO, NextDocs. "The Microsoft Partner Network brings a rich
community of industry partners, as well as the technical and business
development resources we need to respond to our customers and stand out from
our competitors."

New Membership Opportunities Available to Partners

Starting today, partners will renew their annual Microsoft Partner
Network memberships under the new structure, allowing them to choose the
membership opportunity that best meets their needs. Partners will also have
the opportunity to build relationships with their peers and with experts at
Microsoft. Using Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn or the Microsoft Partner Network
Community, any partner can get answers to questions and take part in
conversations about latest technology trends and topics such as best
practices, business development and how to drive innovation.

Microsoft Action Pack Subscriptions will give partners access to
software, development tools, training and market visibility. Partners can
further demonstrate their expertise by earning silver or gold competencies in
any of 29 areas, each of which relates to a specific customer need and aligns
with one of Microsoft's customer awareness campaigns. Companies that
demonstrate a mastery of their skills can attain gold competencies, which
identify them as being best in class in that particular business solution.
Gold competency recipients are given additional access to unique benefits
designed to help them reach their specific business goals.

Members of the Microsoft Partner Network can also join the Small Business
Specialist Community (SBCS), BizSpark or WebsiteSpark. Each of these
communities provides its members with technical and business development
resources. SBCS is focused on partners that provide small- and
midmarket-business solutions, and BizSpark and WebsiteSpark are focused on
entrepreneurs and business startups.

"Microsoft has long been an innovator in partner programs, and the
Microsoft Partner Network once again shows the vendor's leadership in this
area," said Darren Bibby, program director for IDC Software Channels
Research. "The Microsoft Partner Network will continue to help the wide array
of Microsoft partners make a significant contribution to the global economy."

Enabling Partners to Succeed in the Cloud

Fueled by wide availability of broadband and numerous technical advances,
cloud computing is opening the doors to new commercial possibilities for
businesses. The Microsoft Partner Network is delivering resources to help
equip partners for this next wave of innovation and to transition to
developing and selling cloud-based applications and solutions.

The new Microsoft Cloud Essentials Pack provides partners with the
resources they need to experience and extend their business to the cloud.
Microsoft considers partners that have already sold cloud computing
solutions, have taken part in advanced training, and can provide customer
references as having demonstrated an ongoing commitment to its cloud
computing efforts. As such, they can qualify for Microsoft Cloud Accelerate.
Participants in this program will be rewarded with a Cloud Accelerate badge,
additional internal use rights and other benefits that exceed those offered
in Cloud Essentials. More information about Microsoft Cloud Accelerate and
Microsoft Cloud Essentials Pack can be found at

New Benefits and Resources for Partners

In addition to tools such as Microsoft PinPoint
(, which puts partners in front of customers
when the customers search for a Microsoft solution on a website, Microsoft is
committed to making constant improvements and expanding the tools to support
its partners. As such, Microsoft is also globally rolling out new
solution-based incentives that reward Gold Certified Partners driving sales
in specific Microsoft solutions, chosen for their growth and market

Partners making the transition to the Microsoft Partner Network can find
a variety of tools and resources at the Microsoft Partner Network portal

About Microsoft's Worldwide Partner Group

Microsoft invests in the success of its partner channel and more than
640,000 organizations make up Microsoft's partner ecosystem. Partners have
been instrumental to Microsoft's success over its 33-year history, and they
have come to rely on Microsoft for the products, technology, tools and
resources that enable them to create profitable and unique businesses.
Additional information on the Microsoft Partner Network is available at

About Microsoft

Founded in 1975, Microsoft (Nasdaq: MSFT) is the worldwide leader in
software, services and solutions that help people and businesses realize
their full potential.

Lisa Tryall, +1-425-638-7000, ltryall at, or Rapid Response Team, +1-503-443-7070, rrt at, both of Waggener Edstrom Worldwide, for Microsoft Corp. NOTE TO EDITORS: For more information, news and perspectives from Microsoft, please visit the Microsoft News Center at Web links, telephone numbers and titles were correct at time of publication, but may have changed. For additional assistance, journalists and analysts may contact Microsoft's Rapid Response Team or other appropriate contacts listed at

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