Five Companies That Came To Win This Week

For the week ending May 10, CRN takes a look at the companies that brought their ‘A’ game to the channel including Wiz, Apple, ISSQUARED, ServiceNow, Microsoft, and the more than 50 IT vendors that signed the CISA Secure by Design pledge.

The Week Ending May 10

Topping this week’s Came to Win is cloud security startup Wiz, which pulled in an impressive $1 billion in new funding this week – venture capital the company will use to fuel its already rapid growth.

Also making this week’s list is Apple for debuting new iPad tablets that the company says provide AI capabilities that outperform the coming wave of AI PCs from other vendors. Managed service provider ISSQUARED is here thanks to a savvy acquisition that expands its geographic reach and its Microsoft Azure expertise. And ServiceNow and Microsoft make the list for integrating their GenAI platforms – an industry first.

And a host of IT companies – including many leading cybersecurity tech developers – win kudos for signing the Secure by Design pledge, put together by the federal Cybersecurity & Infrastructure Security Agency (CISA), committing themselves to building enhanced security into their products in line with CISA’s Secure by Design principles.

Wiz Lands $1B In Funding, $12B Valuation Amid Surging Cloud Security Growth

Wiz, the fast-growing cloud security provider that has already attracted an impressive amount of funding, this week said it had raised an additional $1 billion in financing from high-powered Silicon Valley venture capital firms including Andreessen Horowitz, Lightspeed Venture Partners, Greylock and Sequoia Capital.

The new funding pushes the company’s total financing since its 2020 launch to $1.9 billion and boosts its valuation to $12 billion. That’s up from $10 billion following the company’s early 2023 funding round – which had already stood as the highest among cybersecurity unicorns.

Wiz has been generating surging growth throughout its four-year history — initially thanks to its cloud security posture management (CSPM) offering that rapidly delivers improved cloud visibility and security. The company surpassed $350 million in annual recurring revenue last year and has expanded its technology to become a broad Cloud Native Application Protection Platform (CNAPP) provider spanning security for cloud, code, data and AI.

The additional funding comes after top company executives told CRN earlier this year that Wiz is pursuing an intensified push with channel partners for its next stage of growth.

Apple Calls AI PC Rivals Laggards With M4-Based iPad Pro Reveal

Apple used the unveiling of its new, M4-powered iPad Pro tablets as an opportunity to claim that it’s far ahead of Windows-based AI PC vendors, thanks to a new version of its Neural Engine the company says is “more powerful than any neural processing unit in any AI PC today.”

The Cupertino, Calif.-based tech giant revealed the next generation of its iPad Pro tablets, which will feature a smaller, 11-inch version in addition to the standard 13-inch model. The company also revealed a new iPad Air, which will include a new 13-inch model on top of the standard 11-inch size and use the company’s M2 chip that debuted in 2022.

Apple said the new iPad Pros will be its first devices to use the company’s new M4 system-on-chip, the successor to the M3 that debuted in Mac computers last fall. For the first time in the iPad’s history, the premium tablet designs are also getting OLED screens, thanks to a new display technology that combines two OLED panels to increase brightness and color vibrancy.

The Neural Engine, a key component of the M4, is Apple’s version of the neural processing unit (NPU) that accelerates AI workloads. Apple executives made a point to say that Apple’s custom processor designs have used NPUs far longer than chip vendors.

“Now while the chip industry is just starting to add NPUs to some of their processors, we've been including our industry-leading Neural Engine in our chip for years,” said Tim Millet, Apple vice president of platform architecture.

ISSQUARED Acquires Fellow MSP CCT, Gains Microsoft Azure Talent

IT and cybersecurity MSP ISSQUARED this week said it had acquired CCT Technologies, a California bay area-based MSP, as a way to both expand its geographic presence and gain experienced Microsoft Azure talent.

ISSQUARED, which was on the 2024 CRN MSP 500, acquired CCT as part of its plan to extend the company’s geographic reach, ISSQUARED founder and CEO Bala Ramaiah told CRN. In addition to an expanded geographical presence, CCT also brings ISSQUARED increased Microsoft Azure expertise, Ramaiah said.

The CEO said ISSQUARED has two more acquisition deals in the pipeline for later this summer. The company made two previous acquisitions in 2018 and 2019.

ServiceNow, Microsoft To Integrate Their Now Assist, Copilot GenAI Platforms

Microsoft and ServiceNow this week unveiled plans for what they are calling the industry’s first integration of two different generative AI platforms.

The move will allow the ServiceNow Now Assist and Microsoft Copilot to seamlessly interact, passing data and information between them and handing off other tasks in ServiceNow and compatible Microsoft 365 applications to each other.

Now Assist is ServiceNow’s technology for adding AI and generative AI into every workflow on the company’s flagship Now Platform workflow automation system. Merging the intelligence of Now Assist with Microsoft Copilot creates a more holistic, connected experience that allows users to get the help they need, regardless of which platform they're working in, said Dorit Zilbershot, ServiceNow vice president of product management, AI and innovation, speaking at this week’s ServiceNow Knowledge 2024 conference in Las Vegas.

ServiceNow channel partners told CRN that the Now Assist and Copilot integration will provide an intuitive way to handle workflow management and make it easier for solution providers and their customers to leverage all the functionality and data available on the Now platform.

Dozens Of Companies Sign Secure By Design Pledge

More than 50 IT vendors, including many in the cybersecurity industry, win a round of applause this week for signing the Secure by Design pledge put together by the federal Cybersecurity & Infrastructure Security Agency (CISA).

The pledge signifies that an enterprise software developer will commit to building enhanced security into their products, in line with CISA’s Secure by Design principles.

Among the initial signatories – including many in the cybersecurity industry – were AWS, BlackBerry, Cisco Systems, Claroty, Cloudflare, ESET, Forescout, Fortinet, Gigamon, GitHub, Google, Hewlett Packard Enterprise, Huntress, IBM, Ivanti, Lenovo, Microsoft, NetApp, Okta, Palo Alto Networks, Proofpoint, Qualys, Rapid7, SecureWorks, SentinelOne, Sophos, Tenable, Trellix, Veracode and Zscaler.