Microsoft will host the annual Worldwide Partner Conference (WPC) next week (July 10-14), and we are eager to connect with our Exchange and Lync partners in Los Angeles, California.

WPC is the marquee event of the year to engage with our worldwide partners to reflect on the year’s performance, celebrate successes and discuss future opportunities. This year in particular is an important year in our journey to bring the best productivity solutions to our customers whether they are on premises, in the cloud, or a combination of both. With important releases of Exchange, SharePoint, Lync and most recently Office 365, our customers have the tools they need to transform productivity in their organizations. 

Partners are an important element in that journey – not only do they help customers realize the value by deploying and supporting the infrastructure, but also they develop rich applications and solutions that helps unlock the potential of their software. For example, see these videos about Lync partners Gluck and Kanja helping construction firm Herrenknecht save costs and build CEBP applications for their business needs and Dimension Data help Commonwealth Bank of Australia have one of the fastest adoption of any technology product in their company’s history. And it isn’t just Lync partners—Exchange partners are also doing great work in helping customers adopt and deploy Exchange 2010.  

There are many examples of partners helping customers save money and build innovative solutions. In particular I’d like to call out our UC Award winners and finalists this year.  We had over 100 submissions from system integrator, ISV, hosting and device partners and it was fantastic to see the innovation and creativity.  A big thanks to everyone who submitted an entry!

And here are the winners…

Unified Communications Market Acceleration Partner of the Year Winner:  infoWAN Datenkommunikation GmbH for their expertise in planning, deployment and management of Microsoft Exchange 2010 and Exchange Online

Finalists: CDW & Dimension Data

 

Unified Communications Innovation Partner of the Year Winner: Polycom for their innovative and Lync interoperable solutions that span voice, video and telepresence.

Finalists: ProtonMedia and Jasco

Congratulations!

In preparation for WPC, we’ve been working diligently to create great in-depth content, demos, and solution showcases.  If you’re a partner heading out to WPC, here is a quick checklist on some of the Exchange and Lync sessions to look out for -

Tuesday, July 12 12.00- 1:00 PM: Future of Productivity Keynote (Kirk Koenigsbauer)

Tuesday, July 12 1:30- 2:30 PM: BP04: Dollars, Euros, or Yen: How Exchange brings you growth opportunities from on-premises to the cloud, (Julia White)

Tuesday, July 12 1:30- 2:30 PM:  BP03: Going Big with Lync: Delivering a New, Connected Experience (Kirk Gregersen)

There are additional activities lined up, like our Unified Communications Symposium on Sunday, as well as interactive sessions during the general conference led by business leaders and subject matter experts. There is also an exciting and diverse set up of partner demonstrations at the Solution Theater from Aspect, Binary Tree, BT, Concord, Enabling Technologies, HP, Illuminari Tech, infoWAN, NET, Polycom, Quest Software, and Sipcom, among others.

During the week, we will have important updates to share.  We will discuss the evolution of the Unified Communications competency, talk about how the new Solution Incentive Program for Lync creates more opportunities for partners, announce a new support services offering and discuss FY12 programs and offerings that will help partners deliver more value to customers.  And you should visit the Lync device partners booths as they will have exciting announcements and new products to showcase.

And no event is complete without its share of fun and parties!  Let me draw your attention to one of them.  On Monday, July 11th, on your way back from the Vision Keynotes to LACC, stop by the Kogi Truck where we will be serving up hot Korean/Mexican tacos.  Say hello to the Exchange and Lync teams, grab some delicious tacos, meet with other partners and enter a chance to win a pass to the most coveted party at WPC! 

Keep checking the UC Team Blog for more WPC updates throughout the event.