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Sam Valme, AvePoint: Interview Transcript

Craig: “All right. Hey again, everyone. Channel Futures editorial director Craig Galbraith here, looking ahead to the Channel Partners Conference and Expo and MSP Summit coming up really soon, March 11 through the 14th at the Venetian in Las Vegas.”

“Chance today to talk with Sam Valme, Sam is Senior Director of US Channel Sales in the MSP team at AvePoint, big sponsor of this year's event. And in fact, they'll be set up in the new Cloud Village in the Channel Partners Expo Hall. Sam, how are you?” 

Sam: “Craig, it's Wednesday we're recording this, but it feels like it's already Friday. So I'm doing great. It's always great when it feels like a Friday.”

Advanced SaaS Management for MSPs and IT Vendors

Craig: “That's good. I wish I was there with you. I think my Saturday is going to be Thursday or something like that. We'll see how it goes. All right, Sam, let's talk about AvePoint a little bit. Maybe for those who aren't that familiar with the company, tell us a little bit about AvePoint.”

Sam: “Yeah, so AvePoint is an advanced SaaS management platform really specializing in secure collaboration, specifically in M365 and other online platforms. And really our big play here is helping managed service providers and other IT vendors really help their customers feel secure when they're collaborating in the cloud, whether that's migrating content in, managing that consent, you're really making sure that it's protected so that ultimately their end customers can continue to do their jobs in a secure fashion.” 

“And we see a huge uptick in folks moving more and more to the cloud. And especially with the advent of AI and things like Microsoft's co -pilot platform really gives us the opportunity to ensure that when tools like that are being released to the market, our platform can help make sure they're being used in a secure and proper manner.” 

Craig: “Yeah, it's interesting you mentioned co-pilot. I've been hearing a lot about it when we talk about AI. I'm wondering with it being such a popular topic, what exactly you can do for co -pilot readiness with partners.”

Sam: “Yeah, so, , it's interesting because it feels like every couple of years we come up with some new technology to help us better collaborate or better communicate as groups. , a couple of years ago, it was the advent of SharePoint search, right?”

“Being able to look inside of M365 and things like SharePoint to find data and then Microsoft releases things called Delve. And then, , now we have the Microsoft Graph and now Copilot as it's called. 

“And really the crux of it all comes down to making sure that the data, that those kind of platforms and technology are not only crawling, but in the case of them, something like Copilot, as they're kind of interpreting the data that you have view access to, really making sure that that data is tagged properly and what you have access as a user making prompts to generate new content, making sure that the permissions you have to view that information is secure as well.” 

AvePoint’s Three-Step Partner Approach

“So we really take a three-step approach to helping our partners and share that they are really enabling their customers to take advantage of these tools. The first thing is I would like to call a compliant migration so that as you're consolidating Microsoft tenants or maybe moving to a brand new one, that the content that's there is known and is tagged appropriately.” 

“The second thing is that as you have that content moving through the environment, you want to make sure that as it's being introduced, that if it does have secure information like PII or PHI or other regulated stamps, that it is actually tagged appropriately.” 

“And then being able to take action on that content in the event that it is out of place or needs to be remediated for any type of reason. And lastly, it's the workspaces. So not just looking at the document itself, but the SharePoint site or the team, making sure that that project space is still relevant and current.”

“That way, if you're using something like Copilot that generates a new document, now you're not looking at a project that was from 2007, you're looking at something that was from 2024.” 

Craig: “All right, let's take it back to the event here, Sam. Let's talk about where partners or prospective partners can catch up with you guys to talk about Copilot and some of these other exciting things.” 

Connect with AvePoint at the Cloud Village

Sam: “Absolutely. So we're going to be in the Grand Ingram Cloud Village. So it's one of the best spots you could possibly be. I heard they were given on martinis. I don't know if that's still true. Maybe that was just for me. 

“But if you miss the martinis, still come over and see us. And also, you can schedule a meeting through the Channel Partners app as well. It's a fantastic app. So it makes it really easy to connect with us. But yeah, feel free to stop on by. We’d love to talk to you more about your secure collaboration journey in M365, as well as higher leveraging tools like Copilot.”

Craig: “Very cool stuff, Sam. Thanks for AppPoint's sponsorship of Channel Partners, and thanks for joining me today on Channel Futures TV. Thanks so much, Chris.”

AvePoint, Channel Partners Conference & Expo