Network Box launches channel program

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Managed security provider Network Box has launched a channel program to bring new resellers into the fold on the back of double digit growth here last financial year.

Managed security provider (MSP) Network Box launched a channel program to bring new resellers into the fold on the back of double digit growth here last financial year.

The three-year-old company in Australia has also hired Anthea Kapa as its new channel manager based in Melbourne. Chris Nixon would continue to manage channels from Sydney.

Network Box sells a hardware, software and security service under a service fee arrangement. The package includes anti-virus, anti-spam, VPN, web content filtering, firewall, intrusion detection and system reporting in one unit. It uses technology developed by AMD, Kaspersky and SurfControl.

The service is managed from operations centres around the globe. Network Box was running between 130 and 140 updates every day.

Under the program, dubbed OUTManage, the MSP would provide lead and demand generation, training and discounts to partners that decide to join the program, said Andrew Tune, director at Network Box Australia.

There was just under $500,000 in the kitty for channel marketing, said Tune. This money would be spent on events and other channel promotions, he said.

Tune said the company has had ‘zero’ churn since launching in 2002. “We have never lost a customer,” he said. It expected to have 200 customers this financial year.

Tune said the company was not asking for resellers to have particular skills. “We want to be able to engage with all resellers. We don’t ask that they have particular expertise -- what we ask for is a commitment to training and exposing the Network Box solution to their customer base.”

There were around 20 active resellers selling the Network Box service, he said. Some partners were engaging with one qualified potential customer every week, he said.

Tune said that the company was not interested in blanket coverage. “We’d much rather have 20 good, focused partners rather than have 200 on the books,” he said. “Selling managed services is all about trust and credibility.”

The Network Box service is sold to the reseller channel through distributor Firewall Systems.

Nick Verykios, marketing director at Firewall Systems, said the service was now used by 80 sites in Australia. “Twenty-five resellers were responsible for that. The penetration is there, the number of trained people is there, we had to formalise this [offering],” he said.

The new program would determine “who can and can’t sell it” and the distributor wanted to make sure resellers were properly trained.

Network Box resellers would benefit from recurring revenue streams, he said. As an example, if a customer spent $1000 initially on the service, the reseller would get “half that back” each year on the renewals, Verykios said.

Resellers would also charge an ongoing consultancy fee from creating and validating security policies for their customers, he added.

“Some resellers are getting into their sixth and seventh sale of this [service] and are taking more of it [consultation] on as they start to cost/justify it.’

Some were even talking about setting up their own sub-operations centres themselves, he said.

Network Box is the fastest growing part of Firewall’s business and the distributor had been responsible for securing 60 new sites with its reseller partners. Network Box sales represented 6 percent of Firewall’s total sales revenue last financial year. This year, the company expected that number to be 12.5 percent, Verykios said.

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