Headquarters: Palo Alto, Calif.
Technology Sector: Security
Key Product: Immunet Protect
Year Founded: 2008
Number of Channel Partners: 2 worldwide
Ideal Channel Partner: Small business-focused solution providers
The Lowdown:Immunet is a start-up that brings together top IT security specialists with backgrounds at such companies as Symantec, McAfee, Secure Networks and Cloudmark. Led by founder and CEO Oliver Friedrichs, the Immunet team believes that these days, using freeware to penetrate markets is the best model for selling antivirus software.
"The challenge of antivirus is that it's become a commodity. Charging for it is not going to be a long-term viable business. So our model is to give it away at the basic level, then upsell our customers to paid products that are more fully featured," Friedrichs said.
"We can offer our partners loyalty on the upsell to the premium product. Partners that join today and sell the free version of our product, they'll be able to join in on the paid product."
"Because we're consumer-oriented, our channel would be consumer-oriented PC OEMs as well as ISPs. And we can build custom solutions for a particular user base," Friedrichs said, adding that the product for SecureBrain had been customized for the Japanese market.
Technologically, Immunet bills itself as a provider of "collective immunity for the Internet," leveraging "the growing power of social networks with community sharing features to defend entire communities of users in real-time against thousands of new threats generated every day."
Another selling point? The light footprint of Immunet Protect makes it ideal for devices like netbooks, according to Friedrichs. "We've been adopted by a lot of netbook owners, whereas some of the leaders in the security segment, their products are just too big," he said.