Malwarebytes' vice president of worldwide managed services provider (MSP) and channel operations Mike LaPeters joined the security firm in July, moving from a number of endpoint security businesses.
When offered the opportunity to come to Malwarebytes, LaPeters said he “was a little bit nervous” to return to endpoint.
“Endpoint is so crowded and … endpoint companies are challenged with trying to bring value to the discussion," LaPeters told ARN.
However, LaPeters claimed that what brought him on was how Malwarebytes approached the challenge of endpoint.
“I'm a services kind of guy, which for the last 10 years; I've been focused primarily on services partners,” he said.
“Malwarebytes was really making and wanted to make a big investment in this space; this whole looking at endpoint a little bit differently.
“Having a company that's the size of Malwarebytes that wants to really double down on a market that I'm passionate about – it was a great opportunity.”
Australia and New Zealand
Operating in Australia, LaPeters said the measures the firm takes are different to those around the world, and even with other countries in the Asia Pacific region.
"Australia is about as on par as you're going to get with where the front runners are [in terms of] adopting technology, adopting programs, and adopting go to market strategies,” he said.
Australia is also a significant market for Malwarebytes, with LaPeters claiming that on the measure of the adoption of delivering security as a service versus delivering it as a resale product, Australia is considered to be the firm’s number two market worldwide.
“The majority of our business today is through services partners, and to see Australia adopting what is considered a next gen go to market strategy is really promising and it's reassuring,” he said.
“We've been spending a lot of time over the last couple of months, trying to figure out, 'How do we continue to add meat into our program?' because partners here; it's not just about price, they want flexibility,” LaPeters said.
“They want programs that net them benefits; they want ease of doing business.”
By comparison, LaPeters said that he could bring a product to Europe, the Middle East and Africa, and if it had a competitive price, then there is a high chance Malwarebyte could beat others in the market.
Earlier this year, in May, Malwarebytes released its OneView console for partnered managed service providers. For the next three to four months, LaPeters said the program received a lot of hands on feedback from partners.
Despite it only being in the market for six months, LaPeters said that the firm saw “immense success in adoption”, but at the same time, he claims there is more room to grow.
“I think we've got a solid platform that does what people are looking for when it comes to the manageability aspect of multiple clients. It's our underlying technology that does all the magic; that's the thing that does everything,” he said.
LaPeters added that he’s still listening to feedback, with plans to release an update in February 2020 to address changes to manageability, global policy management and global command execution.
However, unique to the Australian and New Zealand markets is the trialling of what LaPeters called usage based billing, where customers are charged for what they use every month instead of requiring annual contracts.
“Most partners only want to be billed what they're using anyway, and being tied into a contract's a little bit challenging at times,” he said.
The reasoning behind the trial is because, in LaPeters' words, A/NZ is “a really good ring-fenced region, because it’s finite”.
“It’s focused, you can affect an impact in this area much differently than if you were to say, North America or in EMEA [Europe, Middle East and Africa] or the rest of Asia,” he said.
With security at the forefront, LaPeters explained that security provides businesses with significant opportunities if they can present themselves as an expert in the complex field that is security.
“Security is really, really hard. It's incredibly complex. It's changing every single minute of every single day,” LaPeters said.
“What made you secure yesterday doesn't keep you secure today. In fact, in some cases, what made you secure 15 minutes ago doesn't keep you secure today.
“Couple on top of that the fact that there's an expectation of more than a shortage of more than three million qualified security engineers by next year, this is a huge opportunity for partners as a whole; … going down the path and becoming a security expert for your customers is an enormous opportunity.”
He added that becoming a security expert is a way for a partner to differentiate themselves from the competition as he claimed that “antivirus and firewall just doesn’t cut it any more”.
“It's a white picket fence that runs around your business; your neighbours respect it but the bad guys sure don't. You need something more than traditional antivirus, something more than traditional firewall to fix this. And it takes more than just technology to solve this problem,” LaPeters said.
“It's like crime or it's like war. You don't you don't win a war by throwing technology at it. You have people, you have process and you have technology. So this is where the opportunity is for partners today.
“I am begging partners to explore this to figure out what they need to do to get trained on this, and then go out there and take this on for their customers, because I guarantee you that if a specific partner doesn't solve it, their next door neighbour will solve the problem to take their business away from them," he said.