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Kaseya CEO Fred Voccola: SMB IT Experts In ‘The Right Place At The Right Time’

C.J. Fairfield

‘These small to midsize businesses are being digitally transformed. They’re changing and IT is not replacing what they used to do, it’s augmenting it. That means that small business has the ability to reach a much larger audience, but it’s dependent upon technology to do it,’ says Kaseya CEO Fred Voccola.

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Small and midsize businesses are the largest and fastest-growing sector in the entire global economy, said Fred Voccola, Kaseya CEO. In 2021, 69 percent of new jobs were through SMBs, which make up 52 percent of the total workforce.

And Fortune 1000 companies perceive them as competitors, he said.

Voccola spoke at the Miami-based vendor’s ConnectIT conference in Las Vegas this week about how SMBs are the backbone of the global economy and it’s up those in the channel to make sure they operate efficiently and to the best of their ability.

“We as IT professionals and IT security professionals in the SMB space, we are in the right place at the right time,” he said. “There has never been a better industry to be in than what we’re in today.”

He said the growth that all IT companies are experiencing “is like nothing that the world has ever seen.”

“When we think about what’s happening with the global economy, it’s small to midsize businesses that are driving everything,” he said. “More than half of the total commercial workforce employed around the world are small to midsize businesses. When you think about what’s forecast in the next three to four years, it’s growing even more.”

[Related: Kaseya CEO Fred Voccola: ‘We’re Not Buying Datto To Destroy It’]

And SMBs are increasingly investing in a technology initiative, according to Voccola.

“These applications provide so much value,” he said. “These small to midsize businesses are being digitally transformed. They’re changing and IT is not replacing what they used to do, it’s augmenting it. That means that small business has the ability to reach a much larger audience, but it’s dependent upon technology to do it.”

Security Management Is Key

In 2012, one out of roughly nine small-business owners said their business applications were mission- critical, Voccola said. In the past year, nine out of 10 said applications were mission-critical.

“The applications have to be available, they have to be hardened, they have to be secure, they have to work, which means they need enterprise-class IT and security management,” he said. “SMBs are now requiring enterprise-class IT and security management. That’s a huge shift.”

But being dependent on technology is a double-edged sword, he said. Having IT capabilities changes a business, but it requires the partners who are delivering those capabilities to have an “exponential increase in availability.”

Ninety-seven percent of users expect perfect technology execution, he said, which has tripled from what it was six years ago.

Cyberthreats Have Exploded In Last Seven Years

Since 2015, the number of security threat vectors has increased more than 400 percent, he said. Response time requirements have increased by 72 percent and critical data volumes have increased nine times in that same time period, according to Voccola.

“That adds up to about a 250 percent increase in the amount of output that IT and security professionals have to do to deliver the type of business applications that SMBs are looking for today,” he said.

Phillip Walker, CEO of Network Solutions Provider, a Manhattan Beach, Calif.-based MSP, agreed with Voccola’s insight into SMBs.

“We kind of got away from that model [of shopping at SMBs] and we went to the consortium,” he said.

“Not to pick on anybody in today’s world, but Walmart represents 85 small businesses. That was 85 families who used to have wealth. Now when you go to buy flowers, you go to Walmart.”

While consumers shifted to big-box stores, he said they were “buying thin“ because products are manufactured “thin and fast.”

“But SMBs add value,” he said. “If you want a pizza, you know there’s a place in town that makes the best pizza. But how many times have you ordered Dominos?”

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