Sun Seeks Entries for 2004 iForce Partner Excellence Awards

2/4/2004 - Sun Microsystems issued a call for entries for the 2004 iForce Partner Excellence Awards, co-sponsored by CMP Media LLP (CRN, InformationWeek and VARBusiness). The awards honor U.S. iForce partners that have excelled in providing quality products, innovative solutions and superior services to customers. Partners and customers may submit entries online from February 1st through February 27th, 2004 at the following website:

"Sun is committed to rewarding partners that invest and grow their business with Sun," said Gary Grimes, vice president of U.S. Partner Management and Sales at Sun Microsystems, Inc. "The annual iForce Partner Excellence Awards give us a chance to publicly honor those partners that have developed and delivered proven solutions to solve customer business problems."

Winners will be announced at an awards ceremony on April 21, 2004, at the iForce Partner Summit in San Diego, CA. Partners, with permission from their customers, may submit entries in the first four categories below. The remaining four categories will be determined by revenue achievement for the current Sun fiscal year-to-date.

Most Innovative Solution
Awarded to the iForce Technology Integrator, Solutions Provider or Value Added Reseller that impacts customer business practices by delivering the most innovative solution based on Sun Microsystems technology.

Achievement in Innovation
Awarded to the iForce Global Systems Integrator or mid-tier Systems Integrator that impacts customer business practices by delivering the most innovative solution based on joint technology from Sun Microsystems and the iForce Partner.

Most Innovative Software Solution
Awarded to the iForce Software Partner that has developed and deployed a solution that uses Sun Java Systems (Java Enterprise System, Java Desktop System) or components in a new market or in a unique way to help an end-user customer.

Best Business Transformation
Awarded to the iForce Application Provider or Independent Software Vendor whose Sun platform-based solution created the most radical business transformation for an end-user customer.

Top Mid-Market Performer/New Target Account Partner
Awarded to the iForce Partner with the most new-to-Sun sales and corresponding revenue into the enterprise mid-market based on participation in Sun's Target Account Rebate Program (TARP) and/or Vertical Solution Rebate Program (VSRP).

Top Support Services Partner
Awarded to the iForce Partner that has demonstrated commitment to Sun's solution strategy and annuity-based business model through developing a significant Support Services revenue stream.

Top Consulting Partner
Awarded to the iForce Partner that has achieved significant financial results through a close alliance with Sun Professional Services to provide customers with best-in-class Professional Services Solutions.

Top Storage Partner
Awarded to the iForce Storage Elite Partner that has achieved significant financial results through a close alliance with the Sun Storage organization to help meet customers' strategic business and technology needs.

The entries will be judged by a panel of Sun executives and members of the press and analyst community, and each category will have one winner. Award winners will receive SunFund marketing program funds to promote the award recognition to customers and prospects, and will be featured in a special insert in InformationWeek.

The iForce Excellence Awards recognize partners that have leveraged the iForce initiative to solve customer problems and grow their business. Sun's iForce Initiative brings together Sun and its best-in-class partners worldwide to deliver proven solutions that reduce customers' costs and time to market.

About CMP Media LLC
CMP Media LLC ( is a leading integrated media company providing essential information and marketing services to the entire technology spectrum -- the builders, sellers and users of technology worldwide. Capitalizing on its editorial strength, CMP is uniquely positioned to offer marketers comprehensive, integrated media solutions tailored to meet their individual needs. Its diverse products and services include newspapers, magazines, Internet products, research, direct marketing services, education and training, trade shows and conferences, and custom publishing.

About Sun Microsystems, Inc.
Since its inception in 1982, a singular vision -- "The Network Is The Computer" -- has propelled Sun Microsystems, Inc. (Nasdaq: SUNW) to its position as a leading provider of industrial-strength hardware, software and services that make the Net work. Sun can be found in more than 100 countries and on the World Wide Web at

Sun, Sun Microsystems, the Sun logo, SunFund, iForce and The Network Is The Computer are trademarks or registered trademarks of Sun Microsystems, Inc. in the United States and other countries.

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