MessageLabs unveils new channel program

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Security company MessageLabs has adopted a more formalised channel structure across the Asia-Pacific region with new certifications that attract recurring revenue streams.

Security company MessageLabs has adopted a more formalised channel structure across the Asia-Pacific region with new certifications that attract recurring revenue streams.

The company has thrown out its Gold, Silver and Bronze certification tiers and replaced them with a better structure.

Companies that typically turn over $1 million or more in MessageLabs' sales per annum are placed in the top "Alliance Partner" tier.

These companies include the likes of global organisations, Unisys, CSC, IBM and MCI, said Andy Lake, MessageLabs' Hong Kong-based director of partners, Asia-Pacific.

VARs or system integrators that turn over between $100,000 and $1 million in sales per annum are certified as "Premier Certified" partners and would generally work across multiple regions, he said.

"Certified Partners" would do between $25,000 and $100,000 in MessageLabs sales per annum and operate within just one country, he said.

Other partners would fall into an "Associate Partner" category and would receive a percentage of the MessageLabs business that they referred to the vendor every year. If a partner refers five or more pieces of business per annum to MessageLabs, it can become a "Premium Associate" partner.

"As they hit the sixth contract, they can choose to start getting a percentage of recurring revenue on a monthly basis," Lake said.

Lake said the company's partner structure and certification process had in the past been different across each region and it "hadn't had the formal structure around it that you'd expect from a big vendor."

The company has a channel-only model in Asia-Pacific while around 50 percent of sales revenue in the United States is driven through channels, he said. MessageLabs was aiming to drive 80 percent of all sales globally through channels over the next 12 months, he said.

In conjunction with the revamped certifications, MessageLabs would also provide more back-end support and resources for partners, Lake said. "Previously we were engaging [with channels] very heavily at the front-end but we haven't had the tools at the back-end," he said.

The company had five Asia-Pacific staff focused on driving channel sales and they would be rolling out programs and training as part of the drive.

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