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Oz channel in the spotlight for Kaspersky

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Along with a new product release, Kasperky Lab is also prepping a 12-month assault on Australia’s IT channel with the aim of growing its business here by 20 per cent in the current financial year.

Andrew Mamonitis, ANZ managing director for Kaspersky’s local office, says that the company’s consumer brand-building of recent years (which has seen it taking sports sponsorships in Sydney and Melbourne) is going to be supplemented with more attention to the channel.

With unnamed competitors taking on more direct business, Mamonitis sees an opportunity to pick up new partners for Kaspersky Lab. In particular, he said, partners of other security vendors are finding themselves growing to a level where they can pitch to large enterprise and government contracts, “only to find themselves competing with their vendor”.

Other attractions to the channel, he said, would be margin protection for partners even in discounted deals, and in upgrade sales. “We won’t disadvantage the channel partner for renewing a customer they signed up 12 months ago,” he said.

Identifying other channel initiatives in the works, Mamonitis highlighted increasing attention to industry verticals, and greater business-to-business marketing efforts. Those include a promotion, K-Kash, which gives resellers a sliding top-up from Kaspersky of between 7.5 percent and 15 percent of a deal price depending on the number of licenses sold.

The products behind the launch are the company’s Endpoint Protection 8.0 and Security Center 9.

EP 8.0 integrates with Kaspersky’s cloud-based database. To overcome administrator concerns over sending signature or application data back to Kaspersky, only a snapshot of the suspicious behaviour is sent back, said the company’s Asia-Pac technical VP, Nathan Wang.

“We can then search the Internet for similar behaviours, threats or files,” he said, “without trading out privacy.”

The cloud approach – increasingly popular among all security vendors – is designed to accelerate responses, Wang explained.

The Security Center 9 provides “single pane of glass” policy management for devices from smart phones up. Combining both a hardware and software inventory allows policy to be set at the user, device, connection type an application level.

SC 9 also provides another angle for the channel, Wang said. “A distributor, reseller or service provider can sell, install, and then offer the management, monitoring and reporting to the customer as a service.” This particularly suits resellers with small business customers, he said. ®

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