PPP loan recipients include 15,000-plus service providers

Small Business Administration data showed more than 15,000 IT services firms received Paycheck Protection Program loans to handle cash flow and preserve jobs; more news from the week.

More than 15,000 companies in the IT services sector received loans under the federal government's Paycheck Protection Program.

The Small Business Administration (SBA) this week released data on Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) loan recipients at the $150,000 level and above. The data covers about 75% of the $521 billion in loans approved for businesses and nonprofits, according to the SBA.

The 15,000-plus IT service providers were identified through North American Industry Classification System (NAICS) codes corresponding to computer services and hosting services, categories managed service providers (MSPs) often use to classify themselves. Service providers amounted to about 2.3% of the 660,000-plus organizations receiving PPP loans of $150,000 or more. That 2.3% slice means companies in the NAICS codes studied have received around $7.8 billion in loans, or more than $500,000 each on average.

SBA's PPP initiative was established under the $2 trillion CARES Act economic stimulus package. The program aims to help businesses such as MSPs meet their payroll costs and retain employees. Recipients that meet certain criteria may qualify for partial or total loan forgiveness. Organizations began applying for loans in April. The program got off to a rocky start, with problems including robotic processing automation bots that clogged the SBA's loan filing system.

An SBA spreadsheet containing data on the PPP loan recipients is available here.

An additional data point regarding service providers' use of PPP comes from industry association CompTIA. CompTIA's June COVID-19 survey found 44% of respondents had either received a PPP loan or were awaiting payments. The industry organization polled 231 CompTIA community and council members, including managed services members as well as emerging technology and IT security members. CompTIA said service providers and MSPs were significantly more likely to have applied for PPP loans compared with other CompTIA communities -- 65% of service providers and MSPs reported applying for loans. Overall, about 40% of CompTIA's U.S. members, which include IT vendors as well as service providers, have applied for a PPP loan.

CompTIA members commenting on the PPP loans cited the ability to handle short-term cash flow issues, provide full employment and create a safety net should conditions deteriorate, according to the organization.

Cloudera to tap channel for private cloud

Cloudera's private cloud offering is slated for generally availability this summer and channel partners are expected to play a key role its launch.

Cloudera Data Platform (CDP) Private Cloud is currently available as a tech preview. The San Jose, Calif., company selected Red Hat OpenShift earlier this year as the analytics platform's preferred container technology. Gary Green, Cloudera's vice president of strategic partnerships, said systems integrators and outsourcing firms are expected to be "instrumental in migrating workloads" to CDP Private Cloud.

In one example, Cloudera plans to work with Accenture and Red Hat to transition joint customers, and their legacy workloads, to a private cloud infrastructure based on CDP Private Cloud and OpenShift, Green noted.

He also cited partnerships with Deloitte and India-based integrators and outsourcers. Overall, Cloudera partners with value-added resellers and distributors, ISVs, hardware vendors and cloud partners in addition to integrators and outsourcing vendors. Cloudera in November 2019 revamped its Connect partner program.

Zadara seeks MSP partners

Managed storage as a service vendor Zadara plans to expand its roster of MSP partners.

Zadara, based in Irvine, Calif., works with MSPs that focus on enterprise customers, according to Zadara CEO Nelson Nahum. The company has about 200 active MSP partner locations globally today, and by the end of 2021, aims to have to 1,000 MSP partner locations.

"Our goal is to continue to grow this [MSP] footprint," Nahum said.

Nahum noted that Zadara also works with value-added resellers to offer the company's storage products.

Zadara's chief marketing officer, Tim DaRosa, said the company is currently redeveloping its approach to partner activation, which involves rethinking its activation methodology and how Zadara goes to market with partners. To that end, he said the vendor is redesigning its partner portal, launching a video tutorial series and creating a technical certification program. DaRosa added that Zadara is also working with consultancy BlitzMasters to provide MSPs with sales and marketing training.

Other news

  • SADA, a Los Angeles business and technology consulting firm, expanded its relationships with MadHive, unveiling a 5-year, $50 million deal. In 2017, SADA helped MadHive deploy its advertising platform on Google Cloud. MadHive's deployment is built on container technology such as Google Kubernetes Engine as well as other Google Cloud services.
  • In transactions this week, Accenture took a minority stake in Synadia Communications, a secure communications technology company. Computer Design & Integration (CDI), meanwhile, acquired Plan B Technologies Inc. CDI, based in New York, provides hardware and software, consulting and managed services. Plan B Technologies, with headquarters in Annapolis, Md., offers storage-area networking, backup, security and virtualization, among other services.
  • A report commissioned by the Global Technology Distribution Council (GTDC), an industry organization based in Tampa, Fla., pointed to growth in distributors' cloud business. GTDC's report, "Thriving in the New Normal," noted rapid cloud expansion for distributors and their partners at the beginning of the year, with subsequent surges stemming from COVID-19-related work-from-home initiatives. Citing data from The NPD Group, the report states that U.S. distributor cloud business grew 47% year-over-year in April. Channel partners, in general, have seen cloud services demand accelerate due to the pandemic.
  • Trustwave, a managed security services provider based in Chicago, rolled out a partner program. Trustwave PartnerOne is built around a two-tier distribution and referral model that the company said will drive the expansion of the company's products and services, which include managed threat detection and response.
  • ESET, a cybersecurity vendor based in Bratislava, Slovakia, expanded its MSP partner program, adding a security checkup service, a new licensing portal, a marketing center and cybersecurity awareness training.
  • Channel partners are taking advantage of a test drive site that lets customers try out Nutanix Mine with HYCU, a backup-as-a-service offering. A spokesperson for HYCU said channel partners such as distributors are using the test drive feature to promote Nutanix Mine with HYCU campaigns. Subbiah Sundaram, vice president of products at HYCU, said test drive's target user is someone who doesn't have HYCU or Nutanix Mine.
  • Pro-Vigil, a provider of remote video monitoring and crime deterrence technology, launched a partner program. The program has three volume-based membership tiers -- Associate, Preferred and Premium -- and offers referral and reseller options.
  • US Signal, a data center services provider based in Grand Rapids, Mich., obtained the VMware Cloud Verified designation.
  • Solution provider Speridian Technologies said it has expanded coverage of its Speridian Advantage for SAP SuccessFactors managed services to all of North America.
  • IT services firm High Wire Networks named Ryan Harrison as its senior manager of cybersecurity for Overwatch, the company's managed security platform-as-a-service offering.

Additional reporting by Paul Crocetti and Spencer Smith. Market Share is a news roundup published every Friday.

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