microsoft logo newJust when I was beginning to wonder what has happened with the Master VAR program, Microsoft has scheduled web seminars about the topic. Three Master VARs got separate days this week to pitch their programs. The word "wonder" was used because of the three, Tribridge of Tampa, Fla., has signed one Sales Affiliate and Socius, based in Dublin, Ohio, also one since the program launched in January.
Only the SBS Group of Woodbridge, N.J., has signed more than one. The one-hour presentations were by SBS on Tuesday, May 1; Tribridge, Wednesday, May 2, and Socius, Thursday May 3. Master VARs enlist other Dynamics resellers which  remain independent, but buy product from them and go to market under the Master VAR’s brand. There was some talk that affiliates pay 10 percent of revenue. That would make this a franchising program without a formal franchising program. My conversation at Convergence in March with channel VP Doug Kennedy left the impression that program goals have changed. It had seemed at first the goal was to keep good smaller dealers alive. But Kennedy spoke about using affiliates to reach smaller prospects. Maybe the two are inseparable. It also occurred to me that a similar consolidation happened in the Sage channel over the last two years via DSD Business Systems of San Diego. Owner Doug Deane quietly brought together many quality small VARs. While they are owned by DSD, this did the same thing without vendor hoopla. The difference is local VARs keep their names while operating via DSD. Last modified on Sunday, 16 June 2013
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Bob Scott

Bob Scott has been informing and entertaining the mid-market financial software community with his email newsletters for 10 years. And he has been covering this market through print publications for 18 years, first as technology editor of Accounting Today and then as the Editor of Accounting Technology from 1997 through 2009. He has covered the traditional tax and accounting profession during the same time and continues to address that as executive editor of the Progressive Accountant.

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