ConnectWise Reaches Out to Networking VARs
At first glance, ConnectWise focuses on PSA (professional services automation) software for MSPs (managed services providers). But the MSP industry represents only about one-tenth of North America’s IT reseller base, The VAR Guy believes. That’s why ConnectWise is setting its sights on Phoenix — and preparing to reach out to a broader base of networking VARs. Here’s some insight.
No doubt, PSA software can help solutions providers to proactively manage customer engagements, sales pipelines, marketing programs, trouble tickets and other day-to-day business activities. With that thought in mind, ConnectWise will surface at the Juniper Americas Partner Summit (May 24-26, Phoenix). The VAR Guy, sporting his $10 business jacket and a $5 latte, plans to surface at the conference as well.
Why is ConnectWise heading to the Juniper conference? Here are a few clues. Juniper’s channel partners rank among the most profitable solutions providers, asserts Frank Vitagliano, senior VP, Partners-Americas at Juniper. Vitagliano bases his claim on IPED (Institute for Partner Education and Development) research, funded by Juniper. Also of note: Juniper’s enterprise sales into the Americas grew about 25 percent in 2009 vs. 2008, Vitagliano says, and much of that growth involved channel partners.
With those data points in mind, Juniper’s networking VARs could be a prime audience for PSA business software — at least, that might be the thinking within ConnectWise.
Growing the Market
No doubt, PSA and MSP software providers are looking to appeal to the broader IT channel.
Multiple PSA and RMM (remote monitoring and management) software providers already target Microsoft and Cisco solutions providers. But ConnectWise’s focus on the Juniper partner base offers a potential blue ocean opportunity, The VAR Guy believes.
And generally speaking, PSA software companies are pushing beyond their traditional product heritage. ConnectWise Capital, the investment arm of ConnectWise, has invested in CharTec (hardware as a service) and LabTech Software (RMM). So far, those investments seem to have given CharTec and LabTech a lift.
Meanwhile, Autotask — another prominent PSA software provider — seems to be engaging more VARs through the recent VARStreet acquisition. Indeed, VARStreet’s customer base apparently has doubled since Autotask announced the VARStreet buyout in March 2010.
More thoughts on this topic when The VAR Guy lands at the Juniper Americas Partner Summit.