We shared some big news today on the Official Google Blog, Google Enterprise has launched another way of bringing Google Apps to business users around the world through a new Authorized Reseller program focused on partners and the services and solutions they provide: www.google.com/apps/resellers.

While Google Apps is easy to use and many businesses will continue to come to us directly online or through our Enterprise team, many appreciate the services provided by local firms who are intimately familiar with their particular needs. We're looking forward to working with a broad range of partners, from VARs and IT consultants to professional services firms and global systems integrators, to ISPs and other SaaS providers.

With over 1 million businesses and 10+ million active users in more than 100 countries, Google Apps adoption is set to accelerate even further in 2009. This provides partners with a great opportunity to expand their expertise into cloud computing while building profitable new businesses.

Over the past few quarters we worked closely with a group of 50+ pilot resellers from more than 25 countries to develop and refine the program. We've also built our channel program around the SaaS model from the ground up. Even the tools for reselling are built directly into our cloud-based service, so that even the smallest providers serving the smallest companies can easily set up and manage many customers efficiently.

Google provides resellers with a full set of marketing and sales materials, available in 25 languages, along with technical training, a reseller discount, and the suite of tools for ordering, provisioning, and managing customers. Resellers have the ability to market and sell Google Apps, bundle in complementary offerings, and get customers up and running. They also set commercial terms with their customers, manage all customer billing, and can thereby grow their client relationships. Partners receive recurring revenue streams both from reselling Google Apps and from their complementary services, for the lifetime of the customer.

Google is committed to the success of our Apps users, and so we are committed to work very closely with our resellers to help them develop industry-leading SaaS expertise while we continue to focus on building powerful, easy-to-use cloud computing products that will provide partners with additional reselling and services opportunities.

We look forward to delivering even greater value to our business users in 2009 by working with highly skilled, locally deployed resellers who share our commitment to customer success with Google Apps.

Director, Google Apps Channels