As your value-added distributor, we would like to thank you for your ongoing partnership and Microsoft business. The Microsoft CSP world is ever changing, and we would like to inform you of the most recent updates and announcements in this February addition of our newsletter:

Get your own customised webstore with Epsidon Cloud?
Our state-of-the-art webstore capability enables our partners to transact and integrate directly with Microsoft. The webstore carries your own identity and can be used as a unique capability to drive additional revenue streams – yes drive traffic to your webstore and let them self-service.
For a quick glance of the demo environment, click on the button below or book your demo with your Account Manager.
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Subscribe to Azure Fraud Notifications

Partners in the Cloud Solution Provider program should subscribe to Azure fraud notifications to be notified when cryptocurrency mining is detected in a customer’s Microsoft Azure subscription.

To subscribe to Azure fraud notifications, sign-in to Partner Center, select the Settings gear icon, select the Security tab, and then check Fraud events alerts.

Newly released APIs enable you to get fraud event details and update the fraud event after it’s resolved.

Learn more at Azure fraud notification.

Read more


The general availability (GA) and start of introductory price promotions for seat-based offers in CSP new commerce will take place on January 10, 2022.

Read more

Phase 2 (Beginning February 1, 2022):

In Phase 2, incentives and partner margin opportunity will be removed from the previous Azure offer.

Previous Azure offer in CSP:

  • The partner margin opportunity and incentives associated with the previous Azure offer in CSP will be removed.
  • The price of the previous Azure offer in CSP will equal the estimated retail price for Azure.
  • Azure partner shared services (APSS) in the previous Azure offer will continue to be available until an alternative solution is available.

Read more

Beginning January 26, 2022, customers and individuals without global or billing admin rights can sign up for Microsoft Project or Microsoft Visio 30-day trials before directly purchasing subscriptions or engaging their IT procurement team. This means that customers’ existing business sign-in details can be used to sign up or request licenses for the following trials on their established tenants managed by their organization.

Eligible subscriptions include:

  • Project plan 1
  • Project plan 3
  • Visio plan 1
  • Visio plan 2

Read more

We want to make it easy to schedule an appointment with the advocate working on your Partner Center support ticket. After scheduling, your support advocate will call you at the scheduled time. You will be able to schedule your appointment in Partner Center only after the ticket has been assigned to an advocate.

This capability is being rolled out in phases. During the rollout, you may not be able to schedule appointments for some topics and languages.

Read more

Starting mid-January 2021, all leads originating from Microsoft AppSource, Azure Marketplace, and Azure portal will be visible within Partner Center in the Leads tab of the Referrals workspace. This will provide one place to manage these leads, making it easier to manage your pipeline. A previously configured destination isn’t required for these leads to be visible in Partner Center. If a destination has been previously configured, leads will be visible in Partner Center along with the destination configured previously for each offer.

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Partners can use delegated administrative privileges (DAP) to manage and support their customers’ services. To improve security within the partner and customer ecosystem, Microsoft recommends turning off DAP when it’s not in use.

Microsoft has launched new reporting tools so partners’ administration agents can audit existing DAP connections with their customers. This reporting will capture how partner agents are accessing customer tenants across all tenants through DAP. Partners can then review and remove the DAP connection when it isn’t in active use.

Read more

We would like to invite you to attend a Microsoft Identity Platform Developer Workshop. The Microsoft Identity Platform helps you build applications your users and customers can sign in to using their Azure AD, Microsoft identity, or social accounts and provides authorized access to Microsoft APIs like Microsoft Graph or your own APIs.

Come and learn about the best practices while developing apps and customizing deployments on the Microsoft identity platform. We welcome your feedback on the various features the product team is working on and influence the product roadmap.

Click here to REGISTER for January 25-27 

Date:  January 25 – 27, 2022
Time: 11:00 – 13:00 PM, PST  /     19:00 – 21:00 UTC
Where: Virtual – Teams Meeting 
Who Should Attend: Developers & ISVs
Workshop Agenda: 
Day 1Microsoft Identity Platform Overview 
 Fundamentals of Modern Authentication
Day 2Permissions and consent framework
 Introduction to Microsoft Graph
Day 3Accessing and protecting APIs 
 Using Roles and Groups for authorization

Learn about how we’re simplifying licensing through the new commerce experience

Update December 17, 2020

The below changes will also apply to public sector—education, government, and nonprofit—customers. Get the details.

September 30, 2020

At Microsoft, we’re committed to supporting every organization wherever they are in their digital transformation journey. We do this by investing not just in technology but also in the end-to-end customer experience, from acquiring the technology to the support experience. This results in the availability of new offers through the Microsoft new commerce experience and in removing purchasing options that no longer meet customer needs.  

The Microsoft Open License program was created over 20 years ago for small and midsized customers to buy multiple perpetual software licenses at a volume price. Microsoft is taking a significant step to simplify licensing by introducing perpetual software license purchases through the new commerce experience, as part of our Cloud Solution Provider program for partners, with a target availability date of January 2021. Small and midsize customers will benefit from a simplified approach and greater flexibility in how you purchase software licenses in a way that’s easy to understand, that directly improves licensing asset management, and with predictable costs.  

You can continue to renew and purchase new software licenses, Software Assurance, and online services through the Open License program until December 31, 2021. As of January 1, 2022, commercial customers won’t be able to buy new or renew software licenses or online services through the Microsoft Open License program. New license-only purchases should be transacted through partners in the Cloud Solution Provider program. 

Please note: 

  • There are currently no changes to the Open Value or Open Value Subscription programs.  
  • You continue to have full rights and access to all perpetual software licenses acquired through the Open License program.  


Your options for existing and new purchases after January 1, 2022 are outlined below.1 

  • If you’re buying perpetual software licenses only (without Software Assurance) and want to continue doing so: 
    1. Buy perpetual software licenses from qualified partners participating in the Cloud Solution Provider program. These partners also offer guidance if you’re evaluating online services and looking for value-added solutions, and offer the flexibility needed to address your hybrid use needs with both software licenses and cloud offers. Talk to your software reseller to find out if they are a Cloud Solution Provider or find a partner
    2. For alternatives, talk to your current licensing partner.
  • If you have Software Assurance coverage through the Open License program:  
    1. Your Software Assurance term, including benefits, will continue until its expiration, even if the expiration is after December 31, 2021.
    2. The Microsoft Open Value program is recommended for future purchases that include Software Assurance.
    3. The Microsoft Open Value Subscription program doesn’t offer perpetual software licenses but is a lower-cost subscription that gives you rights to use the software during the agreement’s term and also includes Software Assurance.
  • If you have online services through the Open License program:
    1. Any unused online services tokens can still be assigned and used, even after December 31, 2021, provided it occurs within the five-year term of token purchase.
    2. If you want to purchase additional online services subscriptions, you can work with a partner in the Cloud Solution Provider program to purchase online services subscriptions or you can buy additional online services tokens through the Open Value program or Open Value Subscription program or from the Microsoft Store.


With the changes we’re making to the Open License program and the expansion of offers through the new commerce experience, you’ll get a consistent and simplified purchase experience to help you digitally transform your organization at your pace, with greater flexibility in how and where you buy. Talk with your partner about which option is best for your organization.

1If you are an enterprise customer, or you have special terms or requirements to consider, other Microsoft commercial licensing programs may work better for your organization. Talk to your Microsoft account team or your partner to learn more.

This is required before 1 March 2022

NCE also brings new ways to transact with your customers.

One of the requirements is automation into Partner Center and enabling resellers to manage their customers end-to-end.

The Microsoft New Commerce Experience drives improved revenue predictability, reduced licensing complexity, multiple term options, and features that enable new sales capabilities and operational efficiencies. 

For all the changes you can expect on the NCE Program please review the recording:

View Recording

The Epsidon Cloud Platform enables you as a reseller to provision, manage and market your product to your customers.
This means you can choose the solutions, services, and vendors you want to sell to your customers and manage your own margins, across your catalogue and customers. 

Speak to your Account Manager to get your Epsidon Cloud Webstore today for FREE.

Access the demo here

Get your webstore today

For any further enquiries, please feel free to contact us at:

Product, Sales and Technical Enablement

3 March |  14:00
Collaborating with Microsoft 365

15 February  |  14:00
Windows Server 2022

22 February  |  14:00
Which Microsoft licensing program is right for me?

23 February  |  10:00
A cost effective approach to innovation and application modernization in the cloud

24 February  |  14:00
Features with Microsoft Teams + Demo (Teams Essentials Features)

2 March  |  10:00
Improve your business efficiency with migration to cloud

16 March  |  10:00
How to Securely backup your data and scale in cloud with Azure Backup and Azure Storage

23 March  |  14:00
Microsoft SPLA Program – Back to Basics

24 March  |  14:00
Microsoft Defender for Endpoints



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Did You Know

Operations updates:

Please note that when you want to generate a quote or place and order for any of the free education SKU’s, you must put in quantity as zero.

Please note that all requests for cancellation/suspension or reduction of licenses must be done on License Central.

These requests will not be processed from email.

If you need guidance on the steps to log such a request, please get in touch with your Account Manager or the Operations Team.

Annual subscriptions can be managed in full, from your webstore – adding and removing licenses

Add-on subscriptions can now also be purchased from your store, provided that the parent subscription is already purchased.

Please use the following email address for any Microsoft Operations related queries/requests:

Please contact your Account Manager for the above as this is not available on License Central for Africa

To get all the value First Distribution has to offer, lookout for the upcoming  campaigns we will be releasing to market. 

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Kind regards,
The First Distribution Microsoft Team