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Cloudflare aims for scale with A/NZ Exclusive Networks deal

Opens up access to hundreds, perhaps thousands of partners
Exclusive Networks' Jonathan Odria

Exclusive Networks' Jonathan Odria

Cloudflare hopes to scale up its activities in the local market thanks to a new agreement with cyber security distribution specialist Exclusive Networks.  

The deal, which specifically covers Australia and New Zealand (A/NZ), marks the web infrastructure and website security vendor’s first such agreement with a distributor in the local A/NZ marketplace, although it does have an existing agreement in place with a distributor in Asia.

While Cloudflare has worked with partners in A/NZ for a number of years, the partnership with Exclusive Networks forms part of the company's global channel strategy and continued expansion into Australia and New Zealand.

Indeed, the deal is expected to see the vendor ramp up its partner relationships and exposure in the local market from a “few dozen” to hundreds, perhaps thousands, according to Cloudflare A/NZ head Raymond Maisano, who came across from VMware to lead the company in the local market in 2019.

This kind of step-change in exposure to the local partner community was previously hard to come by, with Maisano pointing out that it’s tricky for a vendor to scale if it’s doing all the legwork on its own.  

“My biggest challenge last year was just having enough people to cover the demand,” Maisano told ARN. This agreement makes that easier and gives us the ability to scale.

“There’s only so many customers you can speak to at any one time. A real challenge is coverage. How do we get to so many customers? How to we understand their individual environments to protect them quickly?

“But here we have a value-added distributor who is really focused on helping to align the right partners with the right customers. Not every customer is in the same circumstance. For us, it allows us to scale much faster,” he added.  

Broadly, the Exclusive Networks deal represents a maturing of the Cloudflare’s go-to-market approach globally, with the company looking to develop the “right” relationships to help it meet the needs of the countries in which it is expanding.

“As we continue to expand our presence in Australia and New Zealand, partnering with specialised distributors will help us seamlessly support more market segments,” Maisano said.  

“Local partnerships complement the global scalability of our network and will be key in expanding our operations to serve joint customers in the region and their users worldwide,” he added.  

For Exclusive Networks Pacific managing director Jonathan Odria, the agreement comes at a time when solutions by the likes of Cloudflare are becoming increasingly paramount.

“With services previously run in data centres now running on the internet, Cloudflare is well positioned to secure this whole new perimeter,” Odria said. “Forming a partnership with Cloudflare whose global expertise in ensuring company resources are secure, performant and reliable, is a welcome addition to Exclusive Networks’ A/NZ market.

"It’s a good win for us, we’re seeing a lot of members moving to cloud-based software-as-a-service solutions, and Cloudflare started in that space from the beginning," he added.