US software configuration management vendor Merant wants to build a reseller channel to push its latest software, Merant Professional 8, in the UK market.
The company hopes to capitalise on growing demand from companies for better development project management, especially in the face of mounting compliancy pressures such as the Basel financial regulation.
Robert Posner, Merant's marketing director, said: "This version lends itself very well to the reseller channel because it can be sold in components."
In the UK Merant has until now sold either direct or via its three distributors, Grey Matter, Redleaf and OpenPSL, none of which were prepared to comment on its reseller plans.
The company has yet to decide how many resellers it wants, but is considering a range of partners from value-added to consultancy-based resellers. "We're willing to work with anyone selling best-of-breed products to their customers," said Posner.
Despite its greater focus on the channel, Keith Humphreys, managing consultant at EuroLan Research, suggested that Merant would find it difficult to successfully extend its UK channel.
"Merant will struggle to keep up with competition," he said. "They will face the problem of getting brand recognition with the dozen or so end-user companies that have a use for this product in the UK, before they can get buy-in from any channel."
But Alex Tatham, vice president of global software at Ideal, was more optimistic. "I think [Merant's] products are pretty niche, operating right at the back end of the IT department and making for quite a technical sale," he said.
"Its ideal channel model would be three or four resellers that can focus on its products and get buy-in for its other products."
The Professional 8 suite contains a number of modules, including Version Manager, Tracker and Build, designed to deliver improved communications, collaboration and automation of key tasks.
Each named user licence will cost £1,100, with a concurrent user licence costing £3,900, allowing for cyclical re-assignment as and when specific skills sets are required.
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