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Tech Data to Keep Tabs on Stimulus Money

If you could go behind the scenes at RCPU, you would find that we're big fans of Google News (sorry, Microsoft), particularly the "Sci/Tech" news feed. It's easy to tell how much news is flowing around the technology industry by looking at Google's Sci/Tech aggregation. It's the newsletter writer's not-so-secret weapon.  

Some days, there are headlines bursting in Sci/Tech about Microsoft and other big vendors. Other days -- like this week thus far -- the headlines run more Sci than Tech, with offerings along the lines of "Don't Mess with Mockingbirds" and "Komodo Dragons Have Venomous Bite." Those were two actual headlines that popped up as we prepared today's newsletter, and while we did open the "venomous bite" story just to make sure it wasn't about European Union regulators, we figured that stories about birds and lizards in Google News's Sci/Tech section signaled a slow news week for the industry. (Oh, and by the way, mockingbirds really are mean. Seriously, don't mess with them.)

And then we ran across a little item about mega-distributor Tech Data. Apparently Tech Data is going to do what the government itself hasn't done such a great job of doing: It's going to keep track of where funds from the federal stimulus package are going.

Some of the hundreds of billions of dollars of our tax money that are going into the economy have to be spent on IT, right? And if there's IT money just floating around out there, partners surely should be able to pocket some of it for their services, right? Tech Data figures as much and aims to let the channel know in which directions the money is flowing -- in other words, how, where and on what the government and the organizations that receive stimulus money are spending it. The idea is to track the money by geography, vertical markets and even methods of purchase.

Public-sector partners will be the channel players most interested in this resource; in fact, it's aimed at them, which comes as no surprise. But we think the whole idea is pretty handy, and we'll be impressed if Tech Data can manage to blaze a money trail and show which funds are going where and how partners can grab some of them.

Check out the Web Resource Center here. The mildly long-winded press release about the operation is here. We at RCPU give this idea an enthusiastic thumbs-up and wish Tech Data and the partners who will benefit from it good luck with the whole project. What better place to jump-start the economy than right here in the IT channel?

How will the stimulus package affect your business? Are you expecting to be able to profit from it? Sound off at lpender@rcpmag.com.

Posted by Lee Pender on May 20, 2009 at 11:55 AM


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