Former Lan Systems managing director, Nick Verykios, has resurfaced as marketing director of security distributor, Firewall Systems. His new role sees him back in partnership with Scott Frew – the founder of Lan Systems who bought a controlling stake in the security specialist two months ago.
According to Verykios, he parted ways with Lan Systems in April because the company’s US parent, Westcon, wanted somebody less outspoken at the helm.
“It was becoming very frustrating to be gagged because, in this country, the press dictate what is known in the market,” Verykios said. “It’s different in the US and Europe because everybody has those constraints but the likes of Tech Pacific and Express Data were able to communicate their message freely here.”
Rumours of a new collaboration with Frew have been rife for the past four months and Verykios – who has bought a 14 per cent share of the security outfit – is glad to be back in a marketing role. His main duties will be promoting the Firewall Systems business model as a new approach to the security market while keeping one eye on the horizon for new technologies.
“We want to take security products away from being a passive point sale and make it more active,” he said. “Only antivirus is really active at the moment because it has updates but if we can get end users to think of security as a central requirement then they will be happy to have the resellers in their face because they know their business is being protected.
“Resellers can bill customers remotely every month for a whole range of services including spam protection and bandwidth management as well as antivirus.”
While the current focus is on finding and partnering with specialist vendors that Firewall Systems considers to be security technology leaders, Verykios said it could well branch out into distributing the security products of manufacturers that have a broader portfolio. Looking beyond the next three years, he said there is also a possibility the company could eventually distribute non-security products.
In the shorter term, in much the same way as consumer IT and electronics channels are starting to merge, Verykios is keen to form partnerships with physical security firms.
“Data and physical security resellers are starting to talk to customers about the same thing,” he said. “We want to work with physical security companies because they have customers that require data security and we can tell them what to sell, how to bundle it and how to put it together. If the data security guys don’t jump on this convergence then the physical side will.”
Although Firewall Systems is not alone in concentrating on security distribution, Verykios insisted the company has no real direct competitors at the moment because of its service element slant.
“Our competitors are the vendors because they are encouraging people to buy their products as complete cover while we maintain that a service component is essential,” he said.