SMBNation 150 Awards Gala a Night of Glitz and Playbook’s

By Frank Gurnee
In Channel
May 17, 2012

The Westin Bonaventure and SMBNation hosted the SMBNation150 Awards Gala in Los Angeles, California. Harry Brelsford, as usual, put together a great event, that brought together MSP’s, Vendor’s, and community who’s who’s at the Academy Awards for the Channel.

Blackberry was the platinum sponsor and had Bryan Lee on hand to kick off the event by announcing and showing off the Blackberry Playbook’s that were given to every awardee. A Short interview from Brelsford with Lee, brought to light the fact that Blackberry is looking to sell into small business and continues to show support for SMB’s. Blackberry has participated for at least 5 years in the smb nation community. Lee went on to explain that blackberry wants to provide IT administrators the option to support multiple platforms. The blackberry fusion plugin, supports multiple platforms, including ios and droid.

There was Special recognition given for Eriq Neile who is currently fighting cancer and was recognized by a round of applause. Carlos Fernando from Brazil, Wayne Small from Australia, as well as Andy Trish from the UK were recognized as international winners, and traveled a great distance to receive their awards. The night continued with winners accepting their awards and short but meaningful speeches. Recognized sponsors were Blackberry, CharTec, OKI, D&H, Western Digital, and PacketTrap and had booths setup to talk about their products and solutions.

Dinner was excellent and spurred great table conversation, Chuck Peavey sat next to me from, he provides a unique solution helping small to medium sized businesses optimize resources and create awareness on environmental issues in the business community. Dinner sparked an interesting conversation on the environment, the reality, or not so reality of global warming, and what the effect of the plastic trash in the pacific ocean has as well as the potential effects this may have on the world. Deep stuff for table talk. Jerry Koutavas President of The ASCII Group sat to my left and had exciting news on a partnership with Vertical Axion, providing exclusive, best pricing in the industry for ASCII, on a completely done for you marketing solution that includes a new website, social media posts, and seo ranking options.

Jay Weiss aka Mr. Magic, performer/magician/MSP entertained the crowd in full swami get up with his magic square trick. Karl Palachuk accepted his award and talked about his 18 hour training coming up Managing for Success 2012 that is completely online. Exciting news and a shift in the traditional model of on premise events. It will be interesting to see the response from this format, which could be a glimpse into the future of MSP trainings and events.

Chris Bangs was connected remotely from his Blackberry, and hung out as a floating head on a big screen, at the front of the room. The night wrapped up with drinks and conversation at the after awards reception. The event was a success, and attendees were in high spirits as they left with their plaques and playbook’s. Karl and company hit the after party scene, no time for partying for channelmsp… channelmsp out.