Westcon has stepped into the cloud computing game by signing an exclusive agreement with security vendor, SMX.
The service-based anti-spam, antivirus and email filtering offerings were developed and launched in New Zealand in 2006 and are based on per-seat pricing. Alongside the services, resellers get access to SMX’s provisioning process, which will enable them to have customers up and running within hours, the vendor claims.
Hosting will be delivered out of SMX’s Melbourne datacentre supported by a 24-hour helpdesk. Westcon will also bring on a dedicated employee to manage the new vendor account as well as train resellers on the services.
Westcon managing director, Leigh Howard, said it was a good time to launch software-as-a-service offerings to its reseller base, and claimed email was the logical first step. He also emphasised Westcon’s focus on driving innovation this year.
The deal with SMX was 12 months in the making, but ties into global and regional efforts to embrace the cloud computing phenomenon.
“We wanted to make sure as we were going into the cloud, that we got it right,” Howard told ARN. “This is our first hosted services, so the discussions were different.
“Our value is in bringing the service to Australia, promoting it and recruiting channel partners on behalf of SMX.” Depending on the success of the first cloud service, Howard flagged intentions to introduce other hosted offerings to resellers later this year.
“It’s a good place to start – email is a piece of IT infrastructure that everyone users, which you can pic off easily and manage independently,” he added. “I see it [SMX] as complementary to existing offerings. There will be a segment of the market that this will appeal to, while others will continue to wait on-premise.”
Although it scales to thousands of seats, Howard saw SMX as a good offering for SMB-sized organisations. In a statement, SMX managing director, Jesse Ball, said it opted to bring on Westcon locally after launching its first Australian-based datacentre. Having local email filtering capabilities were an important differentiator in the market, he added.