McAfee Channel Chief: Distributors Add Value, Bolster Resellers


The partners were warned that the SecurityAlliance Partner Program could face some significant changes moving forward. What changes are planned?

Through time and the acquisitions, more technologies and new routes to market that we're adding, like managed services and SaaS, which came through the MX Logic acquisition, we've been bolting on a lot of things to the SecurityAlliance Program. As we add more, the program becomes less refined over time. We just want to refine it. Instead of having five areas or competencies that you would have to certify in, we'll probably want to collapse that to three. It would be easier to then become certified and move through the levels in the program. We're not announcing a timeline on the changes.

We also want to go harder and faster into the midmarket. Ironically most of our products will sell into the midmarket. When you are a 100-user organization, you need endpoint security, network security and level of security management. You'll probably need three or four solutions integrated to deliver end-to-end security.

McAfee will remove the payout cap on rebates beginning next year, which made some partners happy. What is behind that move?

We had a 200-percent cap, but some of the partners are growing so fast that at 200 percent they feel unhappy because they've missed money. They could have grown 300 to 400 percent this year. It's upsell. If you take our endpoint suites, we've had a very good run of moving to the new suites. It's new product sales like security information event management (SIEM.) And, it is also displacements. We're winning deals 4-to-1. When we're winning, we're displacing.

Top McAfee executives said the company's engineers are busy making improvements to the data orchestration layer to integrate the portfolio of product. Is e-Policy Orchestrator (ePO) not working long term? Are partners encountering challenges with product integration?

It is sort of like a phase 1 or phase 2. Phase 1 is security connected with McAfee products with ePO as the bus or the connection between products. That is here today. We integrate 50-plus products of our own into ePO. Security innovation alliance partners add to that; there are over 200 SIA partners. Where we're going with that is phase 2. You have a data exchange layer that allows integration with anyone in any cloud. You have to have APIs that allow you to do sharing between any systems. We have it in the McAfee world and extended McAfee world through the SIA partners, but we want to extend that broader and further across the SIA landscape.

PUBLISHED OCT. 15, 2013