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Red Hat Earmarks Desktop Client For SMB Partners

Red Hat aims to win over the channel with the summer launch of a Linux desktop product that’s targeted at solution providers selling to small and midsize businesses.

With the move, Red Hat will be migrating to a "channel enablement" model that stands to spur partner sales, Nick Carr, director of product management for Red Hat Enterprise Linux, told CRN. "We are going to be changing our product mix to allow channel sales," he said. "We are changing our client supply model."

Carr discussed the initiative in Red Hat's first appearance before system builders at the Intel Solutions Summit in Scottsdale, Ariz. "Get ready, it's coming," said Carr of the desktop client channel assault.

Raleigh, N.C.-based Red Hat is hammering out the pricing and packaging of the desktop client for the SMB market, according to Carr. Currently, solution providers and end users wanting to buy the desktop client must purchase at least 10 clients, he said, adding that to make it "financially viable," a partner typically would have to buy 50 to 75 desktops, he said.

"Obviously, in the SMB space, people don't want to start at those large numbers. They want to purchase one or two," Carr said.

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