Kaspersky Lab, on the strength of its technical scores, topped the charts in the Network Security Software Channel Champs category. Kaspersky, which did not make last year's list, beat competitors in each of the subcategories, scoring highest in technical satisfaction. Within the subcategories, Kaspersky scored highest for product quality and reliability in technical satisfaction, with its lowest score in product margins, SPIFs and rebates in the financial factors rating.
In support satisfaction, Kaspersky had the highest scores in evaluation and demo equipment policies, and education and enablement, slipping only in postsales and presales support, and general availability of technical training.
Kaspersky, Trend Micro and McAfee all had overall ratings higher than the 2010 winner Novell, indicating that the bar was raised this year. Last year's winner, Novell, was not included in the ranking this year because an insufficient number of its partners responded to the survey. The same was the case with Check Point and Symantec. Trend Micro rose from fifth last year to take the No. 2 slot from McAfee, which fell to third.
"Receiving this honor is a true testament to our unwavering commitment to the channel, to the overall value we provide to our partners' business, and to the excellence of our products and technologies," Nancy Reynolds, senior vice president of corporate sales in North America, said. "We are really proud of being a CRN Channel Champ, and we will continue to do our best in 2012 and look for new ways to improve and earn our partners' support." Paul Anderson, president and chief executive of Kaspersky partner Novacoast, based in Santa Barbara, Calif., said working with the vendor is easy and there's no ambiguity in the relationship.
"There's very few vendors that get the whole partnering concept, and Kaspersky is one of the few that doesn't go to direct," Anderson said. "When they walk in with you with a customer, there's really no Plan B. Either we win the deal together or lose it together."