Here's a snippet from non NDA release notes from Microsoft released on Friday to all CSP partners and Microsoft Partners.
"I’m excited to share that Multi-Channel capability is coming to the Cloud Solution Provider (CSP) program, on track for release on or close to Wednesday, May 6th. Multi-Channel provides CSP partners like you the ability to provision CSP subscriptions for customers that already have an existing tenant with existing subscriptions purchased through other Microsoft Channels (e.g., Direct, Open, Advisor, etc). In short, CSP subscriptions can co-exist with other subscriptions on the same tenant.
Multi-Channel capability has been one of the most requested features that our CSP partner community has asked for to help enable new Office 365 sales opportunities through CSP. Prior to enabling Multi-Channel, it was only possible for you, as a CSP partner, to order subscriptions for customers that you provisioned as a CSP Partner on a separate tenant. However, it’s common to work with customers who have an existing tenant and in these cases you need the ability to provision CSP subscriptions for these customers on their existing tenant. Multi-channel capability makes this possible.
A comprehensive overview of Multi-Channel capabilities is provided in the attached walk-through deck and FAQ document. I encourage you to review both files and contact me if you have any questions. Briefly, Multi-Channel:
· Enables CSP partners to provision CSP subscriptions for a customer that has an existing tenant
· Enables CSP subscriptions to co-exist with other subscriptions on the same tenant (e.g. purchased directly from Microsoft, via Open, EA)
· Allows your customer to retain full control over their existing subscriptions
It’s important to note that Multi-Channel does NOT provide the capability to transition existing subscriptions over to CSP subscriptions. All of the customer’s previously provisioned subscriptions remain, the customer maintains control over those subscriptions and the terms of those existing subscriptions are not changed in any way. Additionally, Multi-Channel does NOT enable multiple CSP partners to sell to the same customer. There can only be one CSP Partner associated with a single customer. “Multiple-CSP Partners” is a separate capability which is included in the CSP roadmap for release in CY15/Q3".
Being able to now split purchasing between different vendors provides an exciting opportunity to Office 365 customers as long as Microsoft removes any confusion of having different pieces of 365 from different suppliers.
Have a great week!
Oliver Moazzezi - MVP Exchange Server