Sophos: Partner-First Strategy Paying OffSophos: Partner-First Strategy Paying Off
Security vendor Sophos is having itself quite a year, if you count a 15 percent increase in the company’s partner base, a new MSP program and two new channel chiefs. And, along the way, the vendor has picked up industry recognition and a number of awards for its channel efforts.
August 22, 2013
Security vendor Sophos is having itself quite a year so far, if you count a 15 percent increase in the company’s partner base, a new MSP program and two new channel chiefs. And, just in case you were interested, along the way the vendor has picked up some industry recognition and a number of channel program awards.
To this point, Sophos has added 1,600 new channel partners worldwide to expand its channel roster to 12,000 members, officials said. Shepherding some of that channel growth is Kendra Krause, the company’s new Americas channel chief, and Karen Delaney, Australia and New Zealand channel chief.
“At Sophos, every year is the year of the partner, but this year in particular has truly demonstrated our ‘channel-first’ commitment—from hosting the largest partner conferences in our history to a game-changing new MSP program, our focus is our channel,” said Mike Valentine, Sophos worldwide sales senior vice president.
“We offer partners the most complete IT security value proposition—proven and award-winning security solutions that are simple to use, combined with the industry’s most powerful channel program,” he said. “And, with an aggressive roadmap that features an impressive array of offerings, we’re very excited about delivering partners even more value in the coming months to help them grow.”
In June, Sophos kicked off its Complete MSP Security partner program for MSPs, formalizing a number of approaches it tested for about a year. The program offers MSPs centralized management, a self-provisioning licensing program, usage-based pricing and pay-as-you-go monthly billing without any up-front commitments.
Krause, who Sophos squired away from rival Fortinet (NASDAQ: FTNT) in April, is said to be well-versed in channel enablement, new business development and partner management. She is tasked with improving Sophos channel programs and partner enablement profile. Prior to joining Sophos, Krause served as Fortinet’s channel sales director and most recently its channel sales and operations vice president. She previously served as SonicWall’s director of National Accounts for two years, territory sales manager at WatchGuard, and Network Product Marketing manager at reseller CDW.
Delaney developed channel strategies at Acer, Dell (DELL)/SonicWALL and IBM (IBM) and, upon joining Sophos, helped to recruit Distribution Central and Connector Systems as Sophos’ first distribution partners in Australia and New Zealand.
Krause is the second significant former Fortinet channel sales executive Sophos has hired in the past few months. In February, Sophos hired Michael Valentine away from Fortinet as worldwide sales vice president. Valentine specializes in channel building and intends to boost Sophos sales in North America, contending that the company boasts the proper products, has shored up its channel program and, with new management, can significantly up its presence.
Last year, CDW named Sophos its Sapphire Partner of the Year and one of its fastest-growing partners.
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