NetIQ to re-launch channel program

NetIQ to re-launch channel program

Systems and security management provider, NetIQ, is re-launching its channel program in an attempt to boost revenue. The company is now actively looking to recruit channel partners and an announcement regarding a new channel partnership is expected later in the week.

As part of a plan to heighten its exposure in the channel space, the company is engaging with Microsoft gold partners through countrywide training workshops beginning next month.

The training programs aim to promote Microsoft's operations management (MOM) technology, which the software giant purchased from NetIQ for $250 million in 2000.

But NetIQ hopes it will also attract potential channel partners to their own extended management packs (XMPs) for non-Microsoft platforms.

“By using Microsoft as a vehicle, we can get our name out there,” NetIQ regional director for Australia and New Zealand, David Taylor, said, "and by working more closely with the channel, we hope that people will notice the technology platform behind the system. We want to build a channel that can utilise our technology.”

The company has predominantly sold directly, with the exception of the Marshal security management product line, which includes MailMarshal and WebMarshal. These products have been sold through partners such as Digitla Networks Austtralia, Surebridge IT and WebSecure Technologies.

It's direct sales were also aimed more towards high-end enteprises.

“Our traditional business model has been a direct sales model,” Taylor said. “But this will only ever hit a small market segment.”

Currently, the company generates about 30 per cent of its revenue through the channel, with the remaining revenue garnered from direct sales.

“Obviously this is not sustainable,” Taylor said. “If anything, it needs to be the other way around.”

A recent sale by NetIQ premier reseller, Data#3 Business Systems, made the company sit up and take notice of the benefits of a stronger channel program.

“That was a $500,000 piece of business for them, and about a $300,000 piece of business for us,” he said. “This made us realise – hey, this is a good idea, we should do this again!”

The new channel program will see channel partners selling the extended NetIQ security and systems management product range.

“We are now actively looking for channel partners in the security space,” Taylor said. "We are also encouraging our staff to work more closely with the channel."

NetIQ’s previous approach to business was very ad-hoc, he said.

“But this simply doesn’t make economic sense," Taylor said. "What does make sense is to move towards a channel model – our approach is now much more structured.”

The company is also planning to participate in the upcoming Australian computer emergency response team (AusCERT) Asia Pacific information technology security conference.

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