Stricter enforcement on Microsoft CSP Direct requirements; Resello supporting Direct Bill Partners to become Indirect Resellers

Microsoft CSP , Platform

Oct. 28, 2020

Martijn Couprie

Microsoft announced today it will start with stricter enforcement of the revenue requirements to participate as a CSP Direct Bill Partner in the CSP program. Direct Bill Partners who don't meet the renevue threshold can no longer purchase an active support contract. As a result, they can no longer make new purchases for customers, create new customer tenants in Partner Center or request direct reseller relationships with their customers.


Support for Direct Bill Partners

With the minimum purchase volume and without an active support contract in place some Direct Bill Partners cannot maintain there Direct status. The solution is straightforward: these Direct Bill Partners can transition to become CSP Indirect Resellers, and start purchasing via an Indirect Provider, such as Resello, instead of directly via Microsoft.

Fortunately Resello offers a CSP Transition Tool to ease and automate the move from Direct Bill Partner to Indirect Reseller, and the knowledge and experience in supporting Direct Bill Partners through this process. Interested parties can reach out to one of our CSP specialists.  


New requirements for CSP Direct Bill Partners

In April 2018 Microsoft announced updated requirements for CSP Direct Bill Partners. These new requirements to enrol in the CSP program, or to keep the CSP Direct Bill Partner status, went into effect on August 31, 2018. Microsoft also announced it would start with regular performance assessments of Direct Bill Partners in terms of purchase volume, revenue and growth. 

The updated requirements, that are still in effect, are as follows:

  • Register and keep an active Microsoft Partner Network (MPN) ID for your business location;
  • Have the authority to accept and sign legal agreements on behalf of your organization;
  • Signing an active support contract with Microsoft, either Advanced Support for Partners (ASfP) or Premier Support for Partners (PSfP), starting at $ 15,000 a year;
  • Offer at least one managed service, IP service, or customer solution application;
  • Have an automation platform in place for provisioning, billing, and configuration of cloud solutions;
  • A 300.000 minimum annual revenue.(added October 2020)

Note that these requirements only apply to CSP Direct Bill Partners. Microsoft does not have such strict requirements for CSP Indirect Resellers, since the Indirect Provider they purchase via takes care of the requirements for them. 

Also, any new CSP partner will have to start as an Indirect Reseller from now on, purchasing via an Indirect Provider. Only once an Indirect Reseller hits the 300.000 USD annual revenue threshold does the company qualify to become a Direct Bill Partner.


Stricter enforcement starting

With the updated requirements and regular assessments in place, Microsoft has now formally announced it will start enforcing revenue requirements. The threshold has been set at $ 300.000 per year. Enforcement starts on January 1, 2021, giving Direct Bill Partners a few months to either meet the revenue criteria, or alternatively, transition to become an Indirect Reseller.

Any CSP Direct Bill partner who does not exceed this threshold will no longer be allowed to purchase an active support contract, and thus, can not meet the requirements to remain a CSP Direct Bill Partner. These CSP Direct Bill Partners will be advised to find an Indirect Provider, and transition to become an Indirect Reseller instead.


Current exception

Microsoft Direct Bill Partners with an active Service Provider License Agreement are excempt if:

  1. They enrolled in the Qualified Multitenant Hosting (QMTH) Addendum program on or before November 2, 2020, and: 
  2. Their CSP revenue was less than $ 300,000 in 12 months before their Advanced Support renewal data.


Direct to Indirect support

Fortunately, as an Indirect Provider Resello can support Microsoft CSP Indirect Resellers in 42 European countries. To support your organization towards becoming an Indirect Reseller we have set up a special page with more information on the process, including the experience, tools and support we have in place for our partners.

If your organization would like to learn more, please feel free to reach out to one of our CSP specialists:

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