Partner Success Story - Virtual IT Group

MSP works with WatchGuard to rapidly expand cybersecurity services to more than 1,400 customers across Australasia, Singapore, and the US

Partner Challenge

From little things, big things grow. And quickly too, when the individuals involved are brave enough to think big and have the drive and determination to turn their business plans into thriving, profitable reality.

Founded in Shellharbour, New South Wales, in 2015 by information technology professional Christian Pacheco, Virtual IT Group (VITG) is one of Australia’s largest and most reputable ICT managed service providers. It has expanded organically and via the acquisition of a string of other consultancies and services providers, and its client base and revenue have grown apace. Today, the company employs a 250-strong workforce and enjoys an annual turnover of circa $A100 million. Its 1,400+ business clients in Australia, New Zealand, the US, and Singapore span the legal, financial, medical, and not-for-profit sectors.

Since 2019, customer demand for cybersecurity services has risen rapidly, in response to the worsening threat climate. 

“As a managed services provider, there was always a cyber element in our offering, but it’s become a heavy focus for us in recent times,” VITG Chief Customer Officer Chris Troncone says. “Safeguarding against cyberattacks and data theft is a high priority for our customers, and we’ve worked hard to develop product and service offerings that provide comprehensive, cost-effective protection.”

The Solution

Following its acquisition of Greenlight ICT in December 2022, VITG assumed the latter’s status as WatchGuard’s sole Platinum Partner in Australia. 

WatchGuard’s Firebox firewalls, Secure Wi-Fi Access Points, and Secure SD-WAN solutions were an integral part of VITG’s Managed Cyber offering already, due to the earlier acquisition of WatchGuard partners, Combo and ITtelligent Consulting Services, in 2019 and 2021 respectively.

“The performance and price point of WatchGuard’s solutions make them very appealing to our customers and to us,” Troncone says. “Essentially, we’re able to offer them enterprise-level protection, without the enterprise-level price tag. 

“WatchGuard’s technology has been tested and proven in the cybersecurity space for many years now and the speed of deployment and support we receive from them is second to none.”

Being able to obtain a bird’s eye view of the perimeter, encompassing every office and remote site, from a single pane of glass makes it easy and efficient for VITG to monitor and manage customer networks.

“Using WatchGuard technology allows us to turn incidents and issues around quicker than with solutions from previous security vendors,” Troncone says.

“In the managed services and managed security space, our focus is on partnering with vendors that enable us to deliver efficient service and support to our customers as time is critical.” 

Upskilling the VITG technical team to support the WatchGuard range has been a straightforward matter, thanks to the vendor’s well-defined certification pathways.

“Everything we need is on the WatchGuard Partner portal and we’ve been able to take advantage of face-to-face training sessions too,” Troncone says. “There are always new features to learn, and WatchGuard makes it easy for our team to get up to speed.” 

The Results

As well as representing a steady source of revenue, WatchGuard’s products have helped the VITG sales team get a foot in the door with customers that are looking to strengthen their cybersecurity posture.

“Being able to supply customers with high-performing cybersecurity solutions like WatchGuard doesn’t just allow us to win business; it can also create opportunities to upsell and expand the relationship,” Troncone says.

Having WatchGuard’s team of pre-sales specialists available to add heft to pitches doesn’t hurt either.

“They’re always willing to jump on customer calls and that’s been very helpful in terms of getting new business over the line,” Troncone says.

Once won, implementations are typically conducted swiftly, with minimal disruption – a bonus for both client and service provider, in an era when every minute of downtime matters.

“We find projects just get done quicker when WatchGuard is involved,” Troncone says. “If we’re putting in new Internet services for clients and we have to install a new firewall, we always see the projects with WatchGuard firewalls get implemented faster.”

Receiving responsive service when the team encounters technical difficulties has made WatchGuard one of the VITG engineering team’s preferred vendors too.

“Our people know they can jump on a call and get the answers they need straightaway,” Troncone says. “Having 24-hour access to that deep technical support can come in very handy.”

As a WatchGuard Platinum Partner, VITG has access to co-marketing funds and plans are in works for a series of partner events and digital marketing campaigns. Further expansion of the relationship is in the cards, as VITG rationalizes its vendor lineup in the wake of the Greenlight acquisition.

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