Adobe revamps its channel structure



“We are not a pull product, we are a push product,” said Sandeep Mehrotra, Channel Account Manager, Adobe Systems India, while talking about the company’s new channel structure in India.

This new strategy is aimed at leveraging the push factor in the market through the united efforts of channel partners and streamlining the channel relations. Adobe will stick to the two-tier channel model but now on will have just one exclusive distributor in India–Tech Pacific. At the same time, its erstwhile distributor, Wipro, will still remain the Adobe Licensing Center (ALC) for the company in India.

Adobe’s new initiatives

  • Tech Pacific will be the only distributor
  • Fixed Dealer Transfer Price
  • Activities of the channel partners to be reported to Adobe every fortnight
  • Accrediton of channel partners
  • Setting up target based on performance rather than market size
  • Dedicated channel partners for the education segment
    N now Adobe has three types of licensing programs–

Elaborating about the new structure in place, Mehrotra said that Adobe is a lean and mean organization and works in close partnership with the channels and this new initiative is to streamline the cumulative efforts in the market. Right now Adobe has three types of licensing programs–Transactional License Program, Contractual License Program and Site License Program.

The Adobe channel partners can sell the Transactional License Program products and rest two licenses will be given by the
ALC–Wipro.

Talking about the new initiatives for the channel partners, Mehrotra said that the company is aiming at a pristine structure unlike the conventional channel structure. In the new structure there will be a fixed dealer transfer price (DTP) for all the channel partners irrespective of the numbers they would be doing. This will also curtail the price undercutting issues for the products, a concern for a lot of channel partners. “A fixed DTP will be an advantage to growing partners and also to the established partners. This will proliferate better bottomlines to these partners, which means healthier toplines for us,” pointed out
Mehrotra.

Adobe has also faced a lot of poaching of clientele between the channel partners in the past. To curb this practice, it is trying at creating a reporting structure in which channel partners will have to report to Adobe on a fortnightly basis about the sales activities done by them.

Retorted Vipul Dutta, MD, Futuresoft Solutions, “Reporting is a wishful thinking, let’s see who all will do the needful. Rest of the reforms done is progressive in nature but has its own set of loopholes. This move has reiterated the fact that such a niche market is channel partners-driven than market-driven.”

Adobe has also started the accredition of channel partners to increase the knowledge and skill sets in the sales executives to widen the market segment further. “We have to present our channel partners as experts in this domain. Ours is a niche product that has specific applications and the market can be accentuated easily with expert selling,” added Mehrotra. For this, the company has set up an extranet in which a sales executive can appear for an online test about the products and gets accredition online.

The last initiative cued is to set up target based on the performance of the channel partner rather than the market size in a particular city.

Talking about these new channel initiatives of Adobe, Ashish Agarwal, Director, Trifin Technologies, said, “This kind of channel structure is the first of its kind in the country and it might be a mixed bag of reactions. A fixed DTP is a win-win situation for both–the channel partners as well as the principal. This is a long-term strategy for Adobe and it should reap good benefits for them.”

Talking about the future plans, Mehrotra felt that education is an upcoming segment and Adobe would like to create an independent channel structure for that. With one distributor and 52 channel partners, Mehrotra wants to refine the complete channel family through better profit margins and transparent channel movements.

Shweta Khanna

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