Former McAfee CEO DeWalt: McAfee's Model Is 'Flawed'


FireEye's DeWalt said he is layering into the company, a third-party technology ecosystem strategy he helped cultivate at McAfee. Much like McAfee's approach, the FireEye platform is open for third-party integration with technology partners, he said. DeWalt pointed out several vendors, including Infoblox, which introduced an adapter designed to pinpoint infected systems; Imperva, which sells a connector to quickly prevent database attacks; and other vendor connection points for automated incident response. The growing ecosystem is a sign of the security market embracing the technology, DeWalt said.

The company has $300 million in cash on hand to invest in a long-term strategy, and DeWalt said he is eyeing some small acquisitions to add talent and security capabilities into the platform. DeWalt said the company was also growing its development arm in India to build out appliances that can address security across a broader set of customers, beyond large enterprises. The approach, he said, allows FireEye to fuel growth quickly, investing heavily in marketing and sales as part of a "go-big, go-small and go-wide strategy."

"The idea is to build bigger and bigger appliances for the largest carriers and enterprises of the world but also build a very small form factor to go to the smallest businesses of the world and then go wide with the form factors and wide with the architecture. We are heavily building that and that is our development path," DeWalt said. "We'll use small tuck-in acquisitions here and there to continue to accelerate growth. It would be mostly to obtain talent or little pieces of technology that may further us along with our strategy, so we're not a big acquirer."

FireEye also has plans for additional investments in its channel program, DeWalt said. The company unveiled its Fuel Program earlier this year, and hired Steve Pataky, the industry veteran who architected Juniper Networks' Partner Advantage Program. The company is investing heavily in marketing, sales, training and certification programs. The two-tiered program consists of VARs and distributors. "Our entire approach to the market is to work with the channel," DeWalt said.

PUBLISHED NOV. 8, 2013