Kaseya Connect User Conference: 7 Things I Learned Today
During various meetings at the Kaseya Connect 2012 user conference today, I picked up some key tidbits from managed services providers (MSPs) and cloud services providers (CSPs). Yes, there are CSPs here — and in growing numbers. Here are seven takeaways from today’s conference content in Las Vegas.
1. Ultrabooks? Wise Advice: Ultrabooks are those sleek, power-efficient, small notebooks that sometimes resemble MacBook Airs. But note: MSPs should not resell current consumer Ultrabooks to business customers because the consumer Ultrabooks lack effective remote management capabilities. Instead, be sure to ask PC makers and/or Intel if specific Ultrabooks are business-class devices, which have a range of remote management capabilities Expect a flood of business-class Ultrabooks to hit the market in early June 2012. Then, another wave when Windows 8 launches later this year. More info later tonight on The VAR Guy.
2. A Really Smart MSP and the Cloud: Want to understand how an MSP can profit from a range of cloud services? Get to know Terry Hedden, CEO, Infinity Technology Solutions, an MSP in Tampa, Fla. Hedden gave a fantastic presentation on cloud services for MSPs. And he made a compelling case for selling — and profiting — from Microsoft Office 365. Hedden is sharp. He offered five ways you can generate revenue from cloud services.More info later on our sister site, Talkin’ Cloud.
3. ShockeyMonkey and More: Vlad Mazek says he’s rolling out a range of new, free business management software for MSPs as part of the ShockeyMonkey initiative. Mazek says the goal is to upsell the MSPs into his paid offerings like ExchangeDefender. It sounds like some launch milestones will arrive in May.
Side note: Mazek was armed with his iPad… but he showed the strategy to me using neatly-written notes in his organizer. Refreshing. Non-technical. And to the point.
4. Kaseya and a Consultant: Several sources told me Kaseya has hired a company that has merger and acquisition (M&A) expertise. Kaseya CEO Gerald Blackie says the company remains profitable and independent, but is working with a bank-type consultant to help fine-tune Kaseya’s business for ongoing scalability.
5. Cisco OnPlus Service Catching On: That’s the word from Jason Waldrop, CEO of Connected Workplace Solutions, a Kaseya MSP and Cisco partner focused on the government market. During a brief hallway discussion, Waldrop said he thinks really highly of the Cisco OnPlus Service. He’s going to share more thoughts with me later tonight.
6. Missing mindSHIFT: A couple of MSPs told me they are a bit disappointed Best Buy (NYSE: BBY) owns mindSHIFT. Not because of competitive concerns. Instead, the MSPs closely tracked mindSHIFT’s business moves as an independent company, learning from each move and making similar moves or counter-moves. So, who should MSPs emulate now? Long View Systems always comes to mind. But if you want to make a buck in cloud consulting and cloud migration projects, the company you need to learn from is Cloud Sherpas — a Google Apps Authorized Reseller. We cover them regularly on (guess where?) Talkin’ Cloud.
7. Microsoft’s Greatest Gift to MSPs?: Is it Windows Intune? Nope. Instead focus on SharePoint customization services, says Infinity Technology Solutions’ Terry Hedden. He described how Infinity continually upsells customers that want to link SharePoint to their web sites and other applications.
Heading to the evening pool party now. Sorry, I intend to stay on dry land. But I’ll be back with more observations from the conference.