Within the remote monitoring and management (RMM) market, Level Platforms tends to be a quiet player with a loyal managed services partner base. But the company is making some serious noise this week. Specifically, Level Platforms has scored relationships with Intel, Microsoft and Hewlett-Packard on emerging hardware, software and cloud computing projects. Each of those relationships is on display this week at the Microsoft Worldwide Partner Conference 2010 (WPC10). Here are perspectives.

Let's start with the latest news:
  • Level Platforms appears to be partnering with Microsoft on Windows Small Business Server Aurora, a forthcoming SBS upgrade that will have some cloud computing capabilities. (HP also is backing SBS Aurora.)
  • Similarly, Level Platforms is working with Intel on the Intel Hybrid Cloud, which combines Windows Server or SBS with pay-as-you-go server hardware, cloud and managed services capabilities.
  • And only a few days ago, HP and Level Platforms announced a partnership that bundles Level Platforms with an HP storage offering.
Of course, partnerships and handshakes don't guarantee new sales. The Intel Hybrid Cloud concept is a work in progress that Intel plans to pilot with a range of MSPs. And Microsoft's own SBS Aurora effort will take months to polish, even as some pundits predict the death of on-premises small business servers.

There is some irony here: Level Platforms has spent considerable time talking about its ability to monitor cloud systems like Microsoft BPOS (Business Productivity Online Suite).

But good-old server and storage hardware OEM deals -- with HP, Intel and Microsoft -- could put the Level Platforms brand in front of more VARs and MSPs. Was this an overnight strategy? Hardly. During a quick chat at WPC10, CEO Peter Sandiford mentioned Level Platforms has been working on the Intel Hybrid Cloud relationship for roughly a year or so.

Again, I'm not out guaranteeing success for the strategy. But it's hard to overlook Level Platforms' dealings with three IT giants in recent days.

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