Network Hardware Resale's NetSure Takes Aim At Cisco Smartnet

The Santa Barbara, Calif.-based company's new NetSure network management, proactive provisioning and network assurance offerings are available for any end-user device supported through Network Hardware Resale's extended warranty offerings.

"Maintaining networking equipment is a big issue customers are dealing with. Legacy products are being punted off SmartNet but customers want to keep stuff longer, said Mike Sheldon, president and CEO of Network Hardware Resale.

"As networks age and as customers economic sensitivities remain, the market is very, very big for this type of thing," he said. "We can offer [extended warranty service] on most enterprise routers and switches for less than half of SmartNet. And what you're paying for 8-to-5 service for with SmartNet, you can get 24x7 coverage plus monitoring, plus incident management, plus provisioning."

The NetSure services include Network Management (performance monitoring, incident & event management and security management), Proactive Provisioning, Consulting Services and Network Assurance. They're delivered through data centers in California, Singapore and The Netherlands, Sheldon said, and built on a hybrid platform of Solarwinds and Network Hardware Resale's internally-built solution, Sheldon said.

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"The SolarWinds architecture affords us to 'widgetize' and customize components of that. We've taken various aspects of that platform and integrated that into our portal," said Jerry Gross, Network Hardware Resale's senior vice president of enterprise services. "The monitoring and management space is a fairly dynamic and fluid environment. We're also looking at evaluating other providers that may have specific tools that represent value to our customers."

The creation of the managed network services spawned from customer requests and from Network Hardware Resale looking to reshape its image of only being a reseller of refurbished and redeployed Cisco hardware, Gross said.

"We have engineers that are very skilled in understanding the equipment because they've tested it all. We get dirt under our fingernails which puts us in a position where we can identify problems faster and resolve them. We've been developing this [expertise] for the lsat few years and our customers recognize that and want to tap into the knowledge base we have and have us help manage their networks," Gross said.

The NetSure services also are available on any Cisco product, regardless of its original purchase source, said Sheldon. "This service is most frequently sold for equipment the cusotmer already owns. It's not just attached on hardware we're selling. It can be [for products] purchased from Cisco. That's what we're most excited about," Sheldon said. "We've sold about $1 billion worth of stuff in [our history] but Cisco has sold about $150 billion."

About 10 percent of Network Hardware Resale's product revenue comes from other resellers and the company intends to offer the NetSure services to fell channel partners too, Sheldon said.

"It's definitely direct [to end users] now, but we are rapidly upgrading our capabilities to be able to white label," he said. "The resistance we've gotten so far, understandably, is from a Cisco partner who doesn't their customer calling Network Hardware Resale. But we are working toward that."