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New Mandiant Channel Chief Wants to Help Partners Do Business More Easily

The channel is integral to Mandiant reintroducing itself to the world.

Edward Gately

November 8, 2021

5 Min Read
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Mandiant, which rebranded from FireEye last month, is busy implementing changes to make it easier for partners to work with the cybersecurity company.

That’s according to Dee Dee Acquista, who recently joined Mandiant’s channel leadership team as vice president of channel sales for the Americas. She previously was with BeyondTrust.

In this role, Acquista is leading channel sales efforts and strategy in the Americas. She’s also expanding on the Mandiant channel program through a partner-first approach.

Prior to joining Mandiant, Acquista led the transformation of Proofpoint into a channel-first and channel-focused sales organization. Before that, she incorporated channel into SentinelOne’s go-to-market strategy. Most recently, she was BeyondTrust‘s senior vice president of global channels.

Last month, FireEye changed its corporate name and relaunched as Mandiant.

In a Q&A with Channel Futures, Acquista talks about what Mandiant partners can expect in the coming months.

Channel Futures: Why did you want to take this role with Mandiant?

Acquista-Dee-Dee_Mandiant-2021.jpg

Mandiant’s Dee Dee Acquista

Dee Dee Acquista: I’ve followed Mandiant for years, and have always been impressed by the leadership, the technology and their mission. [That’s] providing organizations with innovative solutions to protect them from the latest cybersecurity threats and attacks. I had planned to retire from the industry, and do some volunteering and non-profit work. But when Wes Simons, vice president of Americas sales, contacted me, the opportunity to work at Mandiant was one I simply couldn’t pass up. I’m excited to leverage the channel expertise that I’ve developed over the last decade to bring the Mandiant cyber defense and threat intelligence technologies to a wider audience.

CF: Do the organizational changes that are taking place create additional challenges for Mandiant partners? How will you be helping them navigate these changes?

DA: We’re implementing changes for the better, to make it easier for our channel partners to work with Mandiant. Our desire moving forward is to deliver a focused and clear channel program that provides defined rules of engagement for the partner community. We all know that the largest organizations in the world call on Mandiant when they have a cybersecurity issue. And we’re striving to bring that same level of confidence that a Fortune 50 company CISO has to the CISO of a company that may have 500 employees. At Mandiant, our goal is to make every organization secure and confident in their cybersecurity posture. To achieve this, we will need the support and reach of the channel community.

CF: What’s your take on Mandiant’s channel strategy? Any changes needed?

DA: As we reintroduce Mandiant to the world, the channel is absolutely integral. There is, of course, always fine-tuning to be done. Partners crave consistency and we’d like to deliver that to them. We want them to work alongside us to identify new business opportunities for Mandiant. And we’d like to reward the partners for their role in this.

CF: How will your previous experience with Proofpoint, SentinelOne and BeyondTrust come into play in this new role?

DA: A lot of the same components of a successful channel strategy need to be implemented at any organization. In my previous roles, it was critical to get internal rules of engagement in place and assess where we needed the channel’s support. We’ve already begun having these discussions at Mandiant, figuring out which solutions we want to offer and assuring our internal teams know the role the channel plays as we move forward. We feel that everyone at Mandiant should have relationships with the channel in some respect. And they should feel empowered to tell the partner community our Mandiant story. We’re a new organization with a fresh approach. Ultimately, we will want our partners enabled so they can feel confident telling the story without us in the room.

CF: What will be your role in giving Mandiant and its partners a competitive advantage?

DA: When [Channel Futures] spoke with Wes, he highlighted the importance of giving partners access to what we see on the front lines almost instantaneously so they can provide their customers with the advantage the way we do through APIs, integration points and visibility all through the cloud. For Mandiant, this is a strong advantage in the marketplace and one of the many ways we work with partners to ensure our joint partners are always protected. Being vendor-agnostic grants us the opportunity to support any technologies that our joint customers have in place. As threats and the cybersecurity industry evolve, Mandiant will continue to lead the way — allowing organizations to use the solutions that serve them best regardless of the vendor and layer Mandiant on top for additional, more advanced and complete protection.

CF: What do you hope to have accomplished a year from now?

DA: I hope to accomplish measurable success in the channel for Mandiant. If we can successfully bring this technology to a larger audience, focusing on the midmarket, we’ll know that we have found success. We’re looking to expand past the enterprise space, where we’ve historically done well, to vertical markets such as health care, education and beyond.

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

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About the Author(s)

Edward Gately

Senior News Editor, Channel Futures

As news editor, Edward Gately covers cybersecurity, new channel programs and program changes, M&A and other IT channel trends. Prior to Informa, he spent 26 years as a newspaper journalist in Texas, Louisiana and Arizona.

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