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Key Sessions

Jay McBain

Opening Keynote & Lunch: Future of the Channel: The Changing Buying Journey, Hyperspecialization and New Shadow Influencers


8:00am 2:00pm (360 mins)

Evolution Golf Invitational

Evolution Golf Invitational

If you are interested in sponsoring a foursome, please contact us here

Separate registration required. If you are interested in golfing, please contact us here.

Location: Coore Crenshaw Golf Course

11:00am 5:00pm (360 mins)


Registration Open

Open to exhibitors and All Access pass holders.

12:00pm 1:00pm (60 mins)

Keynote Programming

Opening Keynote & Lunch: Future of the Channel: The Changing Buying Journey, Hyperspecialization and New Shadow Influencers

This might be the most disruptive period in the history of the channel. Line-of-business executives are increasingly leading technology decisions — in many cases, taking over completely from the IT department. These stakeholders are looking to a new set of hyperspecialized influencers to help them plan, implement and integrate new technology with back-end systems. In this session, we will look at what smart partners are doing to capitalize on these trends.

All Access pass required to attend this session.

  • Speaker Jay McBain - Principal Analyst, Global Channels, Forrester

1:10pm 4:00pm (170 mins)

Digital Business Workshop

Digital Business Workshop

This afternoon of guided networking is all about interactive learning from peers in a series of facilitated discussions. Move with your group across four topical areas, guided by experts. Open to partners only and limited to 40 participants.

Table 1: Bigger Customers, Bigger Profits: Capturing Large-Enterprise Business

Suppliers want partners with the skill and experience to land huge deals. After all, it takes a lot of five-figure SMB engagements to move the quota needle. Focus only down-market, and the channel will always play second fiddle to direct sales teams and big systems integrators. We’ll discuss ways to move up-market over time, including reaching out to line-of-business decision-makers.


Table 2: Marketing Now: Omnichannel, Digital & Data-Driven 

If your idea of omnichannel marketing is an email followed by a phone call, welcome to 1997. The science of selling has come a long way. Today you need video, social, data analysis, sales alignment, events — all in pursuit of a consistently excellent customer experience. We’ll review marketing tools and techniques that deliver high impact, with tools for every budget.

Facilitator: Sonya Meline, Effortless Office

Table 3: Growing Big by Getting Focused

Ever feel lost amid a sea of information and communications technology (ICT) business consultants who offer similar services, prices and expertise? Then maybe you need a market niche or specialization. It might sound counterintuitive, but some of the most successful partners today report that their growth has come from resizing their focus — from overly broad to narrowly defined. Join with peers to discuss how practitioners have developed strong businesses after creating a value proposition around a function, geography, vertical market, customer segment, technology or combination thereof.


Table 4: SaaS IT Up! Opportunities in Applications Sales

Price commoditization. Increased competition. Disruptive innovation. All of these and more have put pressure on VARs and MSPs — to differentiate their businesses, to build new technology practices and to create new customer experiences. One way to buffer your business against existential threats is by getting into one of the fastest-growing parts of the technology economy: software-as-a-service (SaaS). Is this discussion, business practitioners will share first-hand details of how they embraced new cloud services, what returns they enjoyed and what lessons they learned. Hear from companies like yours about the hottest products they sell, the customer interactions they enjoy and the impediments that limit deeper engagement. If you’re worried about the future of your business and the fate of companies that sell basic commodity products and services, then this discussion is a must for you.


All Access pass required to attend this session.

  • Moderator TC Doyle - Senior Content Director, Channel, Penton Technology
  • Sonya Meline - Vice President of Sales & Marketing, Effortless Office

1:10pm 4:00pm (170 mins)

IoT Bootcamp: Exercise Your Right to Profit sponsored by Broad Sky Networks

IoT Bootcamp: Exercise Your Right to Profit

Your carrier and technology partners have Internet of Things platforms, hardware and connectivity options set to go. Masters and distributors stand ready with integration help. Customers are reading about smart vehicles, cities and devices. So where are you? If the answer isn’t “Building an IoT practice,” you need this boot camp.

1:10 - 2 p.m.

Platform, Hardware & Software

In this session, we’ll explore various IoT platforms — the glue connecting edge hardware, access points, data networks and end-user apps — and survey the current sensor landscape. We’ll also discuss software, particularly APIs that link everything to the cloud.

Speakers: Beau Barker, VP of Technology,  Broad Sky Networks

2:10 - 3 p.m.

Connectivity, Security & Regulation

Carriers including AT&T and Verizon as well as cable companies are looking to connect sensors to edge and core networks. After all, if you can’t get customer data to an analytics engine, why bother collecting it? We’ll also discuss applicable standards and regulations and have the all-important security discussion.

Speakers:  Steve Haddock, Webbing Inc.; Amir Haleem, Helium Systems

3:10 - 4 p.m.

Services & The Sales Cycle

Now you have an IoT practice and some value-added services, like HVAC control or fleet monitoring. Who do you call on within the prospect organization? How do you market your expertise to the community? Should you consider partnering to offer a more turnkey solution? We will discuss marketing, supporting and succeeding with an IoT solution using an MSP model.

Speakers: Natasha Royer Coons, Teranova Global; Stephen DiFranco, IoT Advisory Group LLC

All Access pass required to attend this session.

  • Track Chair Rick Beckers - President, CloudTech1
  • Beau Barker - Vice President Of Technology, Broad Sky Networks
  • Stephen DiFranco - Principal, IoT Advisory Group LLC
  • Steve Haddock - Vice President of Strategic Channels and Business Development, Webbing Inc.
  • Amir Haleem - CEO, Helium Systems
  • Natasha Royer Coons - Founder, TeraNova Consulting

1:10pm 4:00pm (170 mins)

Ransomware: Prevent, Recover, Understand

Ransomware: Prevent, Recover, Understand

The number of ransomware incidents increased to 228 in the 2017 Verizon Data Breach Investigation Report, up from 159 in the 2016 DBIR. Attackers are getting more sophisticated, and they’re spreading the malice around: The majority — 61 percent — of confirmed victims had fewer than 1,000 employees. No matter what your channel business, you need to help customers protect their data.

1:10 - 2 p.m.

An Ounce Of Prevention …

Ransomware has been a scourge for years. Customers must be aware of the problem and have prevention plans in place, right? Wrong. These attacks are getting easier to launch and harder to recover from.

This track will cover prevention techniques:

  • How ransomware gets in
  • How to provide end user education as a service
  • Technologies to help block ransom malware, such as advanced AV and web and email filtering
  • Advanced phishing techniques to watch for, including “whaling”

Speaker: Brett Kelsey, Vice President & Chief Technology Strategist for the Americas at McAfee; David O'Neil, Director - Incident Response & Cyber Resilience, Kudelski Security

2:10 - 3 p.m.

Pay Up or Push Back?

Experts differ on whether a customer should pay ransom. In some cases, attackers don’t provide the encryption keys even after they collect their bitcoins. They may even come back for another bite.

This track will cover recovery techniques:

  • Disaster recovery considerations, including the criticality of having isolated backups
  • Preparation in case a customer decides to pay, from how to set up a bitcoin wallet to why timing is critical
  • Steps to figure out how the attack was pulled off and quickly close that window
  • The latest in decryption options from industry efforts such as #NoMoreRansom, which now hosts 27 free decryption tools and calculates that it has successfully diverted more than $3 million from criminals.

Speaker: Frank Cittadino, Co-Founder EVP Client Solutions at QOS Consulting

3:10 - 4 p.m.

Knowledge Is Power

Attackers are wily. They frequently change up techniques and malware types to attempt to defeat prevention and recovery measures. Understanding the mindset of malicious hackers can help you stay a step ahead.

This track will cover topics including:

  • From Russia with malice: The business model behind ransomware.
  • Recommendations from the FBI on paying, or not, and how to work with law enforcement
  • Proactive ways to protect your customer’s brand
  • Data integrity: What if they messed with our records?

Speaker: Morey Haber, Vice President of Technology at BeyondTrust; Ron Hayman, Chief Cloud Officer & COO, AVANT Communications

All Access pass required to attend this session.

  • Morey Haber - Vice President of Technology, BeyondTrust
  • Frank Cittadino - Chief Executive Officer, QOS Consulting
  • Brett Kelsey - Vice President & Chief Technology Strategist for the Americas, McAfee
  • Ron Hayman - Chief Cloud Officer & COO, AVANT Communicaitons
  • David O'Neil - Director - Incident Response & Cyber Resilience, Kudelski Security

4:10pm 6:00pm (110 mins)

Keynote Programming

Closing Keynote & Networking Reception

All Access pass required to attend this session.

12:00pm 4:00pm (240 mins)

The CSP Opportunity sponsored by Aryaka

The CSP Opportunity

Today’s cloud service providers offer much more than the IT version of pay-per-use utilities: IaaS, hosted private cloud and inexpensive storage. Modern CSPs are part ISP, part MSP and part consultant. They help customers maximize uptime and flexibility, take advantage of new technologies without large capital and manpower investments, and grow IT as the business grows.

Who should attend: CSPs looking to learn what’s new and ISPs, hosts, agents, VARs and MSPs looking to expand into this hot space

12 – 1 p.m. 

Opening Keynote Panel: New Stack City

Grab a bite and listen to top CSPs discuss how and why they chose the platforms on which they run their private and hybrid cloud infrastructures. We’ll discuss the status of Azure Stack and how it will compare with OpenStack and VMware; explore the hybrid cloud versus multicloud discussion; and touch on new hardware options.

Moderator: Bill Kleyman, CTO, MTM Technologies

Panel: John White, VP of Product Strategy, Expedient; Grant Kirkwood, Founder/CTO, Unitas Global; Gerry Le Canu, Senior Cloud Solutions Engineer, Rackspace

1:10 – 2 p.m.

The Next-Gen, Software-Defined Host

You’ve heard the buzz around containers, microservices, software-defined storage and servers, stateless architectures, direct interconnects — this is definitely not your daddy’s infrastructure. In this session, top network engineers will walk through these and other concepts with an eye toward TCO, technical maturity, scalability and other practical considerations critical to CSPs.

Speaker: John White, VP of Product Strategy, Expedient

2:10 – 3 p.m. 

Protecting Customers Is Job #1

CSPs need to battle ransomware, DDoS attacks and other exploits that can result in downtime and loss of customer trust, not to mention PCI certifications. Besides data center security basics, are you up to speed on secure protocols like SSL, SFTP and HTTPS? What about replication engineered to inoculate against ransomware, support for 2FA and encryption, and new DDoS protection options? In this session, we’ll discuss current best practices for running a secure operation.

Speaker: Bill Kleyman, CTO, MTM Technologies

3:10 – 4 p.m.

The Business End

Now that you’ve built cloud services, you need to manage, deliver and monetize them. In this session we’ll discuss the anatomy of a cloud service in a practical way: How do you create a billing system and how do you know what to charge for your service? Do you segregate each user instance? How do you build a user portal so that your service is easy to provision and, to the extent possible, user self-managed?

Speaker: Grant Kirkwood, Founder/CTO, Unitas Global

All Access pass required to attend this session.

  • Bill Kleyman - CTO, MTM Technologies
  • Grant Kirkwood - Founder/CTO, Unitas Global
  • Gerry Le Canu - Chief Azure Solution Architect, Rackspace
  • John White - VP of Product Strategy, Expedient

4:15pm 6:15pm (120 mins)


ATX Launch Party

Location: Reverbery @ The Hilton Austin

Separate registration required. Open to first-time Channel Partners attendees only.

5:00pm 8:00pm (180 mins)


Women in the Channel Networking Event

The Women in the Channel Networking Mixer is the perfect way to kick off the Channel Partners Evolution event! Join other successful women in the channel to discuss key business topics that impact professional women today. Network with old friends and discover new relationships that will help your business grow, your skills improve and your career soar! This comfortable, open forum fosters collaboration, support and inspiration. Come early, bring a friend and be a part of this special event.

Separate registration required.