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Can SonicWall survive desertion by Dell?

Can SonicWall survive desertion by Dell?

SonicWall A/NZ country manager, Sandeep Joshi, outlines what lies ahead for the security vendor.

Sandeep Joshi - Country Manager of Australia and New Zealand, SonicWall

Sandeep Joshi - Country Manager of Australia and New Zealand, SonicWall

Buyout firm, Francisco Partners, and the private equity arm of activist hedge fund, Elliott Management Corp, have finalised the spin-out of SonicWall as an independent businesses.

But questions about its stability and ability to move forward remain top of mind for local resellers.

SonicWall A/NZ country manager, Sandeep Joshi, reaffirmed to ARN that it's a case of "business as usual" for security vendor, following a spate of "strategic channel moves" made while operating under the Dell banner.

Going forward, Joshi said the new-look vendor will continue to be a partner of Dell Technologies, despite its acquisition of fellow security player, RSA, through the EMC deal.

In addition, Joshi said there will be no layoffs from SonicWall on both sides of the Tasman, following the move to independence.

"It feels like a full 360 degrees from a personal perspective," Joshi told ARN. "I have been with SonicWall since 2011 and back then, it was owned by a private equity firm before being sold to Dell. Now, we’re independent again under Francisco Partners.

"SonicWall is a global company with a growing presence and the Dell acquisition gave us the branding and awareness we needed, and we’ve been very privileged in the A/NZ market to have access to Dell’s customer base and Dell enterprise channel.

"Dell used to be a SonicWall partner before we got acquired by it and Dell got acquired by EMC. That will not go away.

"The good thing is, we’re only independent from the investment and strategic direction, but the Dell partnership still continues and we will manage that relationship very carefully and diligently."

Joshi said global backing for SonicWall will now come from Francisco Partners.

"Fransisco Partners are very focused on the SonicWall growth within the security space, so their backing will be pivotal for our growth," he added.

According to Joshi, Dell has been instrumental in SonicWall’s development thus far, despite Dell executives recently telling ARN that the company didn't really have a global channel strategy in the past.

Sandeep Joshi - Country Manager of Australia and New Zealand, SonicWall
Sandeep Joshi - Country Manager of Australia and New Zealand, SonicWall

“It provided us with the channel strategy that we didn’t have before so, we expect it to bring more good things to our business," he explained.

"SonicWall and Dell have had a strong history over the last few years with growth in the security space and I have no doubt that we will maintain synergies going forward."

According to Joshi, the growth for SonicWall in A/NZ lies in the channel.

“We will continue our tradition of teaming with channel partners who share the same desire in staying ahead of global threats by identifying and deploying network security, access security and e-mail security solutions for each environment," he said.

"We’re going to have more adaptive, more agile growth, focusing on our partners and channel roots, along with delivering our cyber security solutions."

Delving deeper, Joshi expects a greater focus on new markets, while serving businesses of all sizes with specific strengths in large distributed environments, campus education, retail, financial, healthcare and government institutions.

Growing its reseller base is also on the cards for SonicWall’s future plans.

“Attracting new resellers is always on our agenda," he said. "Our gain of partners has been consistent and there is a more rigorous focus on this going forward.

"We want partners that want a good margin and have a strong network and security practice but we’re not looking to pigeonhole partners. We want them to build services on top of our offerings and deliver them to customers."

In accelerating its channel development, the company has launched a new channel program with improved partner rewards, deal protection, expanded technical enablement, and a new stream of market development funds for the local region.

"We expect these changes to have a positive influence on our channel program," he added.

"We will be going to market with extra funding – it’s all good news for the channel. I expect us to only grow from here. I’m excited for the future potential we have as we’ve got exciting times ahead for us."

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