MSPmentor 100: Thrive Networks Grows on Customer Service

Sure, Thrive Networks, the IT services arm of Staples Advantage is planning on enhancing its virtualization play over the next several months. But President of Thrive Networks Jim Lippie (pictured) says that what’s really led them to the kind of growth that let them claim spot 38 on the MSPmentor 100 2010 list is a focus on the customer, not so much the technology. Here’s the scoop.

I checked in with Thrive Networks in December 2009 and again in recent days. Lippie says that a lot is still the same in their world: Thrive Networks still focuses on the SMB space, still employs IT pros that Lippie couldn’t say enough nice things about, and still provides a variety of IT services.

But what’s new, Lippie says, is growth. Growth in its managed services business -- especially when it comes to managed firewalls, which Lippie says are good boosters to Thrive’s bottom line thanks to the recurring revenue they generate. Moreover, Lippie says Thrive is looking into building out their virtualization portfolio and bringing it to their customers.

Lippie says Thrive is in great company on the MSPmentor 100, but what really sets Thrive apart from other managed services providers is that focus on customer service, he asserts. Lippie says that not a week goes by that he doesn’t hear about some new MSP trying to compete with Thrive. But thanks to his expert team and the customer service and “maximum uptime” Thrive provides, he says he’s never terribly concerned.

Next on the agenda for Thrive Networks is a one-day conference the company is throwing in Waltham, Mass. on October 28, where Thrive and technology partners like SonicWall and McAfee will evangelize the benefits of managed services and using virtualization to maximize hardware investments to SMBs.

MSPmentor has a hunch that we’ll be hearing more from Thrive Networks in the near future, so stay tuned.

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