Check Point turns to channel for mid-market push

29 Feb 12

Check Point Software Technologies is looking to the New Zealand reseller channel as it seeks to ramp up its presence in the mid-market this year.

Scott McKinnel, Check Point Software Technologies regional director, says while the company ‘bats well above our weight in terms of presence and market share across sectors including banks, telcos and government, an area we do not do so well in is the mid-market or SMB’.

"And that market accounts for around 60% of the New Zealand market [overall] by value.”

It’s a segment McKinnel says is becoming increasingly aware of the threat landscape and of the need for protection, making it potentially a significant market going forward.

McKinnel says Check Point has the right product set and technologies but hasn’t focused on the area – and needs the support of its channel to play big in that market.

"It's about making sure we're significant [to our channel partners].”

McKinnel says while vendors traditionally focus resources on the larger corporate market, the mid-market is much more challenging,

"We need to walk in the shoes of the channel community and see what we need to do to help them go to market.”

He says the company will be spending more time with its Kiwi channel partners in an effort to understand their businesses better and help them work with mid-market customers to understand issues such as data leak protection and malware. "We’re wanting to take a more business savvy approach and find a way to be as mutually aligned as we can.”

He says providing channel partners with the opportunity to provide ancillary services and project management alongside the Check Point sales will be key.

"Larger organisations can build their own in-house capability, but the mid market won't have the resources to do that, so it's a real opportunity for the channel community to service it.”

McKinnel says in Australia the company has worked with business councils and industry bodies focused on specific verticalisations to educate the mid-market and raise the profile of the company, and that's something he hasn't ruled out for New Zealand.

He says Check Point may add an additional staff member to its New Zealand team of three, and long line resources out of Australia will be 'significantly' bolstered in the year ahead.

Heather Wright is editor of The Channel. Check out the March edition for Scott McKinnel’s views on the current threat landscape for all New Zealand businesses – including cyber terrorism and foreign espionage.

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