Chip maker AMD has introduced a new Partner Program for system builders, retailers, etailers and distributors across EMEA including the UK.
Partner benefits include financial incentives such as rebates, Marketing Acceleration Funds (MAF), DPAs and discretionary funding for technical reviews, access to AMD executives, marketing benefits such as campaigns, logos, plaques, ads and launch participation/joint PR, as well as training, sales tools, technical support and marketing assets/sample kits.
There are now four tiers as part of the APP (AMD Partner Program). There are no monetary costs for participating but there is criteria for each level that the partner has to achieve:
- Select - this awarded to all partners desiring to join the program, and partners receive access to training, sales tools, and marketing assets, as well as Select certificates and logos via the Partner Portal, and channel communications.
- Provisional Premier - this is awarded by invitation only. Partners enter the program with a minimum PPP goal and are given a two-quarter trial period to achieve the Premier minimum quarterly revenue criteria. Those that meet this are promoted to Premier and those that don't are demoted to Select. There's a six-month waiting period before they can be invited to participate again. Provisional Premier partners are eligible to receive Select benefits plus PPP/APA rebates.
- Premier - these partners are eligible to receive Select and Provisional Premier benefits plus access to AMD executives via partner meetings, Premier logos and plaques, launch participation, and sample kits.
- Elite - awarded by invitation only, this tier makes partners eligible to receive exclusive benefits according to track, including: MAF, AET Summit participation, advertising on the Catalyst Control Center driver site, advance roadmap information, and Elite logos and plaques. AMD takes into consideration quarterly revenue of all AMD products combined, quarterly unit share of AMD products with the partner, portfolio breadth and value add capability. Elite partners also have the opportunity to advertise on AMD's Catalyst Control driver site, which is visited by millions of users on an annual basis.
AMD has also introduced a new badge of honour for system builders: The Hero Builder.
Hero Builders can be Select, Provisional Premier, Premier or Elite tier System Builders, and will receive early product samples and associated technical support and documentation.
AMD measures the following over the course of the year to determine eligibility for a partner becoming a Hero Builder: "the partner’s website predominantly displays AMD technology on aconsistent basis, the partner’s online configurator defaults to AMD technology, the partner consistently submits systems for technical reviews when new AMD products are launched, and the partner consistently offers AMD-based systems at time of product launch."
It stressed that Hero Builders are not selected on a 'volume basis'.
There is also a Partner Portal for partners, which contains documentation, sales tools, marketing assets, product training, FAQs, video spotlights, a newsletter archive, driverdownloads, product and industry benchmark information, as well as blogs, forums, social media and details of sales opportunities.
AMD's Neil Spicer, Senior Manager for the EMEA Component Channel, said: "For us it's very important to try and differentiate ourselves from other vendors: the 'one size fits all' approach to partner programs does not work. We need a program that is unique, profitable and easy to understand.
"So by tiering and tracking our different customers, it means we can offer unique support to a customer model that might be diverse, that might be different, that might be etail and distribution – and we can offer programmes set up around that model.
"We've realised that as we evolve, as the channel has evolved, it's not the channel that we lived in five years ago. So by evolving our company, by evolving our products, we need to make sure that at the same time we've evolved the programmes – and that's why we're very excited to be launching the new APP."
"[The Hero Builder tier offers] pre-production samples, early driver and BIOS work with our field application engineers. The unique selling point of a lot of these in-country Hero system builders is that they are first to market, they can water-cool PCs, they can set world records and they can co-work with us to make sure we develop the right solutions for the channel."
Amy McFarland, AMD Senior Manager, Worldwide Channel Marketing and Programmes, added: "A lot of partners in EMEA have multi-business models, so we have built the programme to be very flexible. Essentially the APP brings these key findings together, delivering a partner programme that we believe is going to thrill our channel partners and help them grow and prosper selling AMD technology.
"The cornerstones of the new partner programme are aspire, motivate and design. ‘AMD’. These three cornerstones embody the vision and the enhancements of the new APP."
Sion Roberts, managing director of CMS, added: "The idea that it’s possible for both an independent store and a big multinational to be a Hero Builder for doing something clever and original, and getting the joint AMD story out there is appealing. Anyone can have an original, market-beating idea, and I’m glad AMD recognises this."
Paul Nolan, category manager at Ebuyer, commented: "As one of the UK's largest online etailers, our business philosophy is simple - give customers and businesses what they want, when they want it, and that appears to be a core philosophy that AMD is pursuing also."