Partner Profiles – The Types of Partners For your Business

Identify and define the type of partners that may be relevant to your business and choose partners according to the value they bring to your customers.

Value-added Resellers (VAR)

A company that resells software, hardware, and/or networking products and provides value beyond order fulfillment.

Example: A cloud computing company specializing in Shopify Apps.

Managed service providers (MSP)

A company that remotely manages a customer’s IT infrastructure and/or end-user systems, typically on a proactive basis and under a subscription model.

Example: IBM is the easiest because it has one of the largest offerings of managed services on the market.


An experienced individual that is trained to analyze and advise a client in order to help the client make the best possible choices.

Example: is one we have referenced before who use sales consultants as partners because their solution is robust and consultants speed up the adoption of their platform by their end users.

System Integrators (SI)

An individual or business that builds computing systems for clients by combining hardware and software products from multiple vendors.

Example: Deloitte, IBM, PWC, Accenture… they have teams. trained in complex software implementation like Salesforce.

Original Equipment Manufacturers (OEM)

A broad term whose meaning has evolved over time. In the past, OEM referred to the company that originally built a given product, which was then sold to other companies to rebrand and resell. Over time, however, the term is more frequently used to describe those companies in the business of rebranding a manufacturer’s products and selling them to end customers.

Example: General Motors offers third-party software embedded in their cars.

Independent Software Vendors (ISV)

Makes and sells software products that run on one or more computer hardware or operating system platforms.

Example: Any app offering their solution on a third-party platform like Salesforce AppExchange, is an ISV.


A distributor is an intermediary entity between the producer of a product & another entity in the distribution channel or supply chains, such as a retailer, a value-added reseller (VAR) or a system integrator (SI).

Example: The insurance industry is the best example as they rely on agents and insurance agencies for distribution.