Security provider Symantec is activating a cloud partners programme in ANZ, as part of a global effort which began in the US.
A new CloudSmart e-learning course is designed to help partners to sell solutions beyond on-premise, and to protect customers with cloud or hybrid IT infrastructures. A new Cloud Security Essentials course explains the best practices for protecting cloud environments.
In addition to online courses, Symantec says the training will involve a mix of webinars and face-to-face workshops as well as a regional effort to identify what existing partners to engage with in delivering cloud-based solutions, especially as more resellers develop lines of business around managed services.
“The market is dictating the behaviours of a lot of businesses that are starting to buy security solutions from service providers, rather than just by licensing programmes,” says Nigel Mendonca, Symantec.cloud channel sales director in APAC. “We’re certainly seeing an uptake in the number of MSPs we work with globally and that extends to New Zealand as well.”
Mendonca says the object of the programme is less an enticement to bring on new resellers and more to give partners the flexibility for selling products under different scenarios reflecting current IT architecture.
“Our key objective is to offer better education and solutions to better equip our partners to enhance the message and solutions they’re taking to market,” he says.
Currently the company is analysing its reseller ecosystem throughout APAC to help target marketing to resellers where “it makes sense to sell managed services, hosted services or to build cloud soutions for their customers,” says Mendonca.
Mendonca foresees a greater blending of MSPs and resellers that have traditionally sold only licences.
“Traditional partners — strictly IT resellers — are actually changing their business models to include either service provider offerings, or in some cases to completely tranform to that MSP market,” says Mendonca. “I guess we would be working to take advantage of those changes in the market.”
Mendonca says Symantec derives most of its revenue from enterprise customers, but the shift in the market to cloud provisioning is putting enterprise solutions within reach of SMB customers.
Symantec, in a separate announcement in November annouced enhancements to its channel programme designed for partners in the SMB market. The Margin Builder Program has replaced the SMB Opportunity Registration Programme and is designed to accelerate approval of qualified business opportuntities for resellers serving clients with 25 to 250 users. Member partners can earn three percent to five percent additional margin.
Mendonca generally sees SMB customers following the lead of enterprise clients that have been for years adopting cloud models.
“Our cloud programme is really designed to lay out for a partner how they can take a large number of Symantec solutions to market in different sorts of cloud settings,” Mendonca says. This includes on-premise; through Symantec’s multi-tenanted SaaS solution, in a privately built cloud, or in a hybrid architecture.
The programme is designed to put that in perspective and demystify it, and talk in lanugage that will resonate with end customers,” says Mendonca.