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MSP Faces Cryptocurrency Blunder as Agents Get Fired Up About Consolidation

What do you when your employee installs cryptocurrency mining software on your client's server?

James Anderson

May 28, 2021

3 Min Read
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An MSP ran into a big crypto problem, and agents discussed the future of their industry.

Partners aren’t holding back from talking about the challenges they face. As we do regularly on Fridays, we took to Reddit and LinkedIn to find the juiciest partner conversations about opportunities and controversy. In one case, a partner discussed the rogue actions of an employee that cost an MSP its customer. In addition, partners discussed consolidation in the agent channel.

Check out these intriguing conversations before you start your Memorial Day weekend.

Agent Conversations

Consultant and analyst Peter Radizeski stirred the pot on LinkedIn, discussing recent transactions in the channel. He cited Upstack’s purchase of M2 Enterprise Group and AppSmart’s investment in NXTSYS, as examples of partners “exiting” the industry.

“While the opportunity for partners to sell stuff is at an all-time high, the actual income (commissions) is at an all time low,” Radizeski wrote in a post. “Pricing is compressed in many markets. Vendors are consolidating or changing or going bankrupt. How many partners want to continue in the wake of that?”

radizeski.jpg

Source: LinkedIn

However, team AppSmart-NXTSYS took issue with Radizeski’s use of the word “exit.”

NXTSYS CEO Dave Wallace said his team is by no means exiting the industry. NXTSYS will be buying out its long-term investor as a result of the investment and targeting “exciting growth plans.” But AppSmart won’t be taking over the company.

“We are far from retiring and love the ability to keep growing. Our strategic partnership with AppSmart allows [VP of sales] Jared [Adamcik] and I to stay in the equity/ownership driver’s seat of NXTSYS. We get to laser-focus on our big plans with MSP’s and agents,” Wallace said.

Wallace did agree that consolidation between channel partners will ramp up in upcoming years.

“Many agencies at the 20-25 year mark are indeed looking for an exit or retirement,” Wallace wrote.

Crypto Goes Awry for MSP

One MSP asked peers for advice about a major screw-up. One of their employees installed cryptocurrency mining software on a customer’s server. As you can imagine, this did not go over well.

Commenters largely agreed that the MSP needed to own the problem.

“You’re (as the manager, not as an individual) in the wrong. You need to wear the burden. Put together a plan to ensure this doesn’t happen again and perhaps offer either free hours of support or some other compensation to regain faith,” dankynanky wrote.

Other commenters recommended that the owner use its errors and omissions (E&O) insurance, seek out legal help and even sue the employee. Another poster asked why antivirus software didn’t catch the problem. Apparently the employee added an exception to the antivirus.

“The relationship is probably toast at this point,” Joe_Cyber wrote. “Most firms in this situation would take it on the chin and move on. For what it’s worth, I’m sorry this happened to your business.”

The /msp subreddit has enjoyed a busy week filled with hot comment threads. Various MSPs discussed the difference between Datto and Axcient backup solutions, a concerning Microsoft termination letter and customers’ poor communication skills.

Want to contact the author directly about this story? Have ideas for a follow-up article? Email James Anderson or connect with him on LinkedIn.

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About the Author(s)

James Anderson

Senior News Editor, Channel Futures

James Anderson is a news editor for Channel Futures. He interned with Informa while working toward his degree in journalism from Arizona State University, then joined the company after graduating. He writes about SD-WAN, telecom and cablecos, technology services distributors and carriers. He has served as a moderator for multiple panels at Channel Partners events.

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