5 Companies That Came To Win This Week

For the week ending Sept. 15, CRN takes a look at the companies that brought their ‘A’ game to the channel including Databricks, Fulcrum IT Partners, JFrog, Pax8 and Mission Cloud.


The Week Ending Sept. 15

Topping this week’s Came to Win list is Databricks for its $500 million Series I funding round that puts the data and AI platform developer’s valuation at $43 billion.

Also making the list are solution provider Fulcrum IT Partners for its latest acquisition that expands its vertical industry expertise, DevOps/SecDevOps platform provider JFrog for launching its first official partner program, cloud distributor Pax8 for its new program to help MSPs better sell cybersecurity solutions to clients, and managed services provider Mission Cloud for a new strategic alliance with AWS.

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Databricks Raises $500M In Series I Funding Round, Boosts Valuation To $43 Billion

Databricks raised $500 million in a Series I funding round this week that values the fast-growing data and AI platform developer at $43 billion, the company said Thursday.

The funding round, which Databricks said establishes its price per share at $73.50, was led by T. Rowe Price Associates and included GPU chip designer Nvidia as a new investor.

Databricks said the latest funding round comes as the company achieved a revenue run rate of $1.5 billion in its fiscal second quarter (ended July 31), representing 50 percent year-over-year growth.

The San Francisco-based company also said it achieved non-GAAP subscription gross margins of 85 percent in the second quarter and ended the quarter with more than 10,000 global customers including more than 300 with annual spending with Databricks greater than $1 million.

Fulcrum IT Partners Digs Deeper Into Verticals With Another Acquisition

Fulcrum IT Partners this week completed its fourth global acquisition this year, buying F3 Technology Partners and beefing up Fulcrum’s presence in the healthcare and financial services industries.

Kelly Carter, chief strategy officer of Toronto-based Fulcrum, said the acquisition of F3 brings Fulcrum into new verticals that it either hasn’t been strong in or had a presence in until now. F3’s close relationship with its customers was also a key attraction.

F3’s financial services operations and expertise particularly stood out, said Kyle Lanzinger, president of U.S. and Canada at Fulcrum, which owns a host of other MSPs.

“We’re not just looking for logos, we’re looking for people who understand the industries in which their customers operate and understand how to solve problems within those industries, not just sell technology,” Lanzinger said. “These guys know that really well to the same degree that our other sister companies that we’ve acquired have the same level of depth in other industries, so it complements quite nicely.”

Lanzinger added that F3’s “strong presence and successful track record” in the healthcare and financial service verticals firmly complements Fulcrum’s existing capabilities and enables the company to deliver more value to its customers.

West Hartford, Conn.-based F3 is also a leader in cloud, data center, and automation/DevOps solutions that focuses on providing the best business outcomes for its customers.

JFrog Launches First Partner Program, Forgoes Traditional Tier Structure

DevOps and software delivery platform provider JFrog launched its first global channel program this week, providing its reseller, systems integrator, and DevOps service and consulting partners with a range of incentives, sales and marketing resources, and technical enablement and training opportunities.

JFrog said the new channel program, which the company said is designed around a “customer first” co-sell motion rather than a traditional tired program structure, will create new revenue streams for partners and boost customer adoption of JFrog technology through third parties.

JFrog, headquartered in Sunnyvale, Calif., develops the JFrog Software Supply Chain Platform for mission-critical DevOps, DevSecOps and MLOps tasks including building, distributing and updating software throughout an organization.

JFrog is launching the partner program now because the company is evolving from a product vendor to a platform provider, which creates more services opportunities for partners, said Kelly Hartman, senior vice president of Global Channels and Alliances. And the company’s growth is also a factor in the timing.

The program offers incentives and deal structures that provide partners with multiple ways to generate more revenue. Hartman said partner rewards, for example, are based on such factors as whether a deal is a contract renewal or new business and whether the prospect was brought to JFrog by the partner or the lead was generated by the company.

The program provides dedicated partner managers who work with partners starting with the onboarding process. It provides curated sales and technical enablement resources that help partners train on the JFrog platform as well as sales and technical teams to support each qualified opportunity. Partners also have access to co-branded marketing kits and an expanded product and sales enablement resource library.

Pax8 To Launch Cybersecurity Program Teaching MSPs To Have Risk Conversation

Cybersecurity solutions and services are in big demand today. But cybersecurity is also complex and not all MSPs have the needed expertise to sell it.

Cloud distributor Pax8 makes this week’s Came to Win list for developing a program that will provide MSPs with a roadmap for selling and providing cybersecurity services to their customers.

The program includes how to have up-front conversations with clients about cybersecurity risks without selling products. Such conversations can be tricky given the sensitivity of the topic – especially if a client has been a victim of an attack.

The sales training is followed by steps to improve cybersecurity enablement expertise.

The program is currently in beta and is slated to be available to all partners in early 2024.

Mission Cloud Inks AWS Deal To Accelerate Generative AI

Mission Cloud has established a multi-year strategic collaboration agreement with Amazon Web Services through the cloud managed services provider looks to take generative AI to the next level.

The collaboration plan is designed to accelerates the pace of customer cloud innovation and drive adoption at scale by deepening capabilities and distribution across strategic initiatives, Mission Cloud said.

The three-and-a-half partnership provides Mission Cloud, an AWS premier tier partner, with grant funding in the tens of millions of dollars to add 150 people to its workforce of approximately 320 as well as help with research and development, go-to-market and specialized consulting initiatives.

The funding will also go towards developing generative AI use cases. Another area of development is rearchitecting and re-engineering how MSPs are running on AWS to be more efficient and modern.

Mission Cloud executives told CRN that it’s important to get Mission Cloud’s cloud services platform, Mission Control, into the AWS Marketplace. The Mission Control platform provides access to all of Mission Cloud’s products and services in a single interface.