McAfee's mid-market security mantra

McAfee's mid-market security mantra

McAfee planted its roots in the enterprise arena but is increasingly turning its attention to the mid-market space. ARN caught up with senior vice-president global mid-market business, Darrell Rodenbaugh, to discuss what mid-market customers need and how McAfee is setting itself apart from competitor, Symantec.

What sets McAfee apart from your biggest competitor, Symantec?

We have a single minded focus on security. We wake up everyday thinking, worrying about and doing a lot of work around how to deliver the best security for our customers. We are not distracted by other lines of business that don't have anything to do with security. Our challenge has been in educating our customers and doing a better job of making our customers and partners more aware of the capabilities we deliver.

Last quarter the Bank of America decided to move forward with McAfee and they were an existing Symantec customer. In the banking industry there are huge pressures around costs. The Bank of America made a very expensive decision to say they were not going to use Symantec anymore. It was driven largely by the difficulty in Symantec's upgrade cycle. We also focus a lot on the customer experience and I think that distinguishes us from them.

Last year, McAfee acquired encryption and access control vendor, SafeBoot, to expand into risk management. Will McAfee be focusing on any other areas of security this year?

We will continue to expand our portfolio of security solutions. We are going to deliver that with our own internal development, through partnering and acquisition. We already had a data protection solution - SafeBoot really rounded it out to make our total offering complete.

We are leading the market in delivering capabilities that secure the virtual environment and announced several new functions to make that virtual environment safer than the non-virtual world. We are putting a lot of effort into virtualisation and delivering some of our solutions on top of virtual operating systems to allow customers to easily and efficiently install and utilise our technologies.

What else can partners expect to see from McAfee this year?

In the mid-market space they can expect to see a lot of new investment in our partner community. We have just brought our SME Premier Partner program to this region and the idea is that we want to support partners trying to build robust businesses. We will continue to support partners doing work in the enterprise space, which has historically been our bread and butter. Partners will see us deliver better support, new programs, deal registration, better rebates, marketing and co-marketing activities. Our mid-market business grew by around 20 per cent last year and I believe we will grow by about 30 per cent this year. We are making a big investment and I'm growing our sales force in the mid-market globally by 300 per cent, year-on-year. That sales force's primary mission is to build and develop opportunities with our partners and we are also seeing that growth in Australia.

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