Verio says its recently announced restructuring will open up new opportunities for MSPs.
The hosting and data services company, a subsidiary of Tokyo-based NTT Communications, said last month it would lay off about 25 percent of its 3,000 employees and consolidate its data centers. The layoffs will be concentrated in the United States.
Although Doug Schneider, president of Web services at Verio, declined to provide specifics, he said the overall strategy is to close the older, smaller data centers and migrate customers to "premier" facilities. Those centers are larger and can support a more robust set of managed hosting services geared toward enterprise customers, he said.
Verio plans to extend support to solution providers that co-locate in Verio's premier facilities to provide managed services that the hosting company doesn't currently offer, Schneider said. And he promised that Verio's other partner programs would not be negatively impacted by the restructuring.
Schneider said Verio plans to offer more robust load balancing, database clustering and managed security, among other services.
Solution providers should not view the move as a pullback in the SMB market, Schneider said. "We plan on continuing to [service] the SMB customer and putting the right resources in that market," Schneider said. "But we will also enhance and expand that focus to include the enterprise customer as well."
Cathie Fowler, vice president of marketing at Renton, Wash.-based Zones, a solution provider that sells Verio hosting services to SMB customers, says it's too early to determine the impact of Verio's restructuring. "It seems like an appropriate response to a [slowdown] in demand for Web hosting," she said. "We expect to receive the same level of support [after the restructuring]."
As part of the restructuring, Verio plans to focus business units on specific customer segments and will drop direct support for dial-up and DSL services, although the company will likely partner with another carrier to provide these services in the United States, Schneider said.
The glut in hosting space wasn't Verio's primary motivator for the changes, Schneider said, but he acknowledged it played a role. "I wouldn't say for us [the restructuring] was driven by a glut of space," he said. "It's more of a desire to get customers into a better facility and help us streamline operations. But clearly there has been an overbuilding of data center space and that factored into our decision as well."