MSP Increases Security for Mid-Sized Businesses with WatchGuard
Founded by Ted Watts in 1984 as a print company in the country town of Warragul, an hour outside Melbourne in Australia, the Viatek Group has morphed into a substantial high-tech services organization that offers tailored print, telephony and IT solutions. Viatek has grown organically through acquisition over the past decade.
Today, the Viatek Group employs a team of 150 and has 23 offices across metro and regional New South Wales and Victoria. Six of their offices are focused on delivering IT services to mid-sized enterprises in the finance, health, manufacturing, education and utility industries.
Viatek’s clients typically fall into two categories – tech-forward organizations that have migrated to the Cloud and are enjoying the productivity it delivers and organizations where technology has historically taken a back seat. The latter typically lack the resources to run IT departments of their own and find Viatek’s managed security offerings well suited to their needs.
The company also provides strategic counsel about products, services and the technology trends to its clients. “Part of our role as a managed service provider (MSP) is to give that knowledge and guidance, to be a trusted advisor, talk about what’s out there in the market, what solutions are available and why we think certain vendors are the right fit,” explained Keith McLennan, Viatek Sales Manager Southern Region states.
Viatek is a WatchGuard Platinum reseller in Australia. The company sells the full range of Firebox appliances, secure Wi-Fi and multi-factor authentication solutions. In total, WatchGuard solutions account for around ten percent of revenue for its IT department.
“There were a number of security vendors in the space back then, but WatchGuard was a stand-out security vendor. The pricing was good, we liked the unique features of their product and we were successful in positioning it as an optimum solution for the midmarket. WatchGuard has matured as a business but remains highly competitive in terms of pricing. The platform is continually growing, and they provide a fantastic range of security-based services,” Keith notes.
“Today, Viatek works with more than 500 IT clients and most have a WatchGuard Firebox or are using other WatchGuard products and services. It’s proved an excellent solution for our client base. Once businesses come on board with a WatchGuard Firebox, the relationship tends to be very strong and delivering new services around that seems intuitive and easy to talk about,” Keith remarks.
Viatek enjoys direct support from technical, sales and marketing specialists from across the WatchGuard organization. “We work closely with the WatchGuard channel manager, their business development managers – everyone all the way up to their local managing director who come to our offices and meet our customers,” Keith says.
“WatchGuard regularly does client site visits with us, where they’ll come out and talk to existing clients and new prospects about how their solutions can address many of the security risks they face, including phishing and malware attacks. They’ve made an enormous effort to get to know our business and build those links – we’re thankful for the support of our local WatchGuard team,” Keith reports.
WatchGuard provides Viatek with leads when appropriate, and a number of these have resulted in product sales and managed services contracts. “It’s fantastic to be able to leverage our relationship with WatchGuard to get access to new business,” Keith states.
Marketing collateral, delivered via the WatchGuard Partner Portal, can also be a powerful sales aid. “We find that very helpful when we’re running campaigns or doing mail-outs – their material is high quality and really works for us,” Keith adds.
Additional business is generated by the customer events WatchGuard marketing funds are regularly put towards. “We hold lunches where we get together with key clients and talk about what’s happening in the security space; how WatchGuard products can help them minimize risk.” Keith comments. “WatchGuard also sponsors some of our other, more general customer events or provides a speaker or some content we can use to promote our security offering.”
Keith concludes: “One of the things that’s important to us is to not have too many vendors. We try to build really strong relationships with the ones we do have and lead generation is a key part of that. We enjoy working closely with the WatchGuard team on any new opportunities and evangelizing the WatchGuard suite of products and the brand to potential and existing customers.”