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WEST 2019: What was new and interesting at this year’s show?

March 04, 2019

If you’re a federal government reseller, you already know about WEST, the premier naval conference and exposition for military and industry leaders on the West Coast. Cosponsored by AFCEA International and the U.S. Naval Institute, WEST is the only event in which the makers of platforms and the designers of technologies can network, discuss and demonstrate their solutions in one place. The most recent WEST event welcomed 7,700 attendees on Feb. 13–15, 2019, in San Diego.
 
Today, we hear from three professionals who attended the show: Ed Potoczniak, senior sales executive, Ingram Micro; Barry Weinstein, VP of sales, Mvation Worldwide (a federal reseller partner and Diversity Partner Network member); and Ivan Trusevych, federal business development manager at Aurora Technology Solutions (a federal reseller partner and Diversity Partner Network member).
 
Q. What was new at the show this year?
Ed: For the second year in a row, Ingram Micro sponsored a booth on the exhibition floor, which gave us a 20-by-20-foot space to network with prime system integrators and increase awareness of Ingram Micro’s Diversity Partner Network (DPN). The DPN is a group of small business IT solution and service providers that have the business diversity qualification and specifically serve the U.S. federal government. Ivan, one of our DPN members, and I got to meet seven system integrators—including Lockheed Martin, Northrop Grumman and Raytheon—and discuss the value of our DPN. It’s a win-win for these integrators because they can get diversity-qualified partners, backed by the Ingram Micro machine, and we all work together to drive their business. 
 
This year, Ingram Micro also sponsored a partner pavilion, which included two vendor partners (Zebra and Panduit) and three reseller partners (Lyme Computer Systems, Mvation Worldwide and Aurora Technology Solutions). 
 
Q. Did you see any interesting new solutions?
Barry: I was really impressed with a new solution from Vanguard—some large panels for video walls that are plug and play, which makes them very easy to service. This solution presents a great opportunity for my company because we serve a lot of agencies that are moving toward teleconferencing and videoconferencing. Service-wise, these panels are modular, bendable and very easy to maintain because a user can simply remove the panel and insert a new one—in just 10 seconds. There’s no need to call for an onsite service rep, and if one panel is bad, it doesn’t bring down the entire screen. From Zebra (a manufacturer that’s now on Ingram Micro’s GSA Schedule), I also saw a scan gun that scans accurately from over 100 feet. In addition, I made some good contacts with new manufacturers—like Zebra and Panduit—and we’re working to align with them going forward.
 
Q. What did you get out of the show?  
Ivan: I’ve been going to WEST for over 10 years, and I’ve noticed a real growth in attendance. It’s always nice to connect face to face with the various companies, vendors and VARs we work with, and to see what’s new. This year, my company walked away with several leads—one manufacturer wants us to perform a cybersecurity assessment for one of their products. I also met several program managers from the Navy, Coast Guard and Marines and presented an overview of some interesting technologies, which hopefully will lead to follow-up meetings. In addition, I met some new vendors and security technology partners that might further support our company’s core competency of cybersecurity. 
 
For more information on how Ingram Micro can support your federal government business, contact your sales representative or the public sector team today.