‘Partners, ecosystem and communities are a key part of our GTM strategy’

Dan Sommer, Senior Director, Global Market Intelligence Lead at Qlik explains how his organisation works with a partner ecosystem to offer more data analytics value to customers.

Dan Sommer, Senior Director, Global Market Intelligence Lead at Qlik

It is no longer sufficient for a company to sell a product to a business and then support it with upgrades and service. Product companies must continuously add value through collaborations with partner ecosystems and communities.

Qlik sells a visual analytics solution but it allows its partners to build on top of its platform, thereby opening up its system to developers. It also allows customers to integrate external data sets with their own data. All this opens up a wider spectrum of possibilities and makes data analytics more insightful. This openness allows users and developers to build their own dashboards and visualisations – and therefore makes data more meaningful.

Dan Sommer, Senior Director, Global Market Intelligence Lead at Qlik explains how his organisation works with a partner ecosystem to offer more data analytics value to customers. Sommer is a former Gartner analyst. 

BW: How do you view the Indian market and how significant is India to Qlik?

Dan Sommer: India is the fastest growing market for Qlik in the APAC region. APAC is the fastest growing region in the world.

Indian companies have long established ERP and RDBMS and are now looking at going all the way in deploying analytics solutions.

We have sales and marketing offices in Mumbai, New Delhi and Bengaluru. One of the biggest things that works for Qlik is our partner network. Qlik is a partner driven organisation, and almost 50 per cent of business comes from the partners’ framework. Our channel plays a major role in connecting us to all the other states in India. They go deep into verticals with domain expertise.

We collaborate with some of the biggest SIs (System Integrators). They build applications and value on top of our platform.

BW: Can you tell us more about your partners, and how they add value?

Dan Sommer: We have three categories of partners across the world. One is the Reseller Partners, who we used to call the Solution Providers. They usually have domain knowledge and do the implementation. Then there are the SIs; many Indian SIs (Wipro, TCS, Infosys, etc) work at a global level. The third type of partner are the ISVs or the OEMs. They already have their solution but they take Qlik and embed it in their framework, and then we go to the market together.

BW: How do you support your partners in developing solutions? How are these solutions integrated with your product lines?

Dan Sommer: We give away the engine and the APIs to our partners, and they can build on top of that platform and do tech partnerships with us. If we like what they are doing, then we acquire them. Some of the companies we acquired from our partner ecosystem are Data Market, Idevio, Express Serve.

BW: How do you work with communities to add value to your offerings?

Dan Sommer: Partners, ecosystem and communities are a key part of our go-to-market strategy. They help us build applications on top of our platform and help us differentiate our product from the competition. There are four E’s that come into play here.

We have an Engine that lights up all the data you put into that engine. When you do queries (on the data), you'll be able to see not only what you are clicking on, but also what you are not clicking on. It is the power of the associative experience.

The second is the Experience that the engine brings because we have a self-contained architecture (our differentiator). We also have the visualisation layer and the data integration layer, and we have the data layer, all in one architecture, with the engine.

There is openness in our platform because it is Web driven and API first. That makes it Extensible, and that’s the third E.

The fourth one is Ecosystem.

We have communities that support these four E's.

BW: Can you tell us about all the communities with whom you share synergies?

Dan Sommer:  There are different Qlik communities, and we want to integrate them with each other.

There is a community of web developers called Qlik Branch. They take the components from the engine that are completely open. They might add third-party open source visualisations, from D3, data driven documents -- you can build all that on top of Qlik or build your own visualisations.

There is also Data Market where you can take external data like weather data, socio-economic data, and data related to the GDP -- and vertical data, like financial services, Healthcare. We bring these specific data sets into Data Market, standardise the data models, to make them same as the internal Qlik data, and this is just a click away. Our vision is to enable the customer to put their internal data out into that space, and sell it or share it with other stakeholders -- and vice versa.

For instance, if you take cricket, you could import data about a particular series from Cricbuzz.com, into Qlik, integrate it with your own data and make an analysis.

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