Palisade Systems Shows Uncanny Commitment To Channel

PacketSure 5.0 is an SMB-focused security appliance that integrates with both Active Directory and Citrix, bringing together features such as content analysis, bandwidth management, application and protocol security, and URL filtering, said Kurt Shedenhelm, president and CEO of Palisade, Ames, Iowa. PacketSure, which is available now starting at $6,000, enhances security by providing visibility into the network, showing what protocols are being used and inspecting content within those protocols, he said. It also allows administrators to set up policies to restrict access to applications based on the user, IP address, or time of day, he added.

Dan Collins, vice president of sales at Secure Content Solutions, a solution provider in Santa Ana, Calif., said the steadily rising price of content security solutions from larger vendors is spurring VARs' interest in alternatives such as PacketSure, which costs less and has more features.

Palisade traditionally has been a direct sales-focused vendor but recently reached its goal of selling 100 percent of its products through channel partners, said Scott Erskine, Palisade's channel manager. The company currently has 45 North American partners and aims to boost that to 250 by the end of 2007, he said.

As part of the effort, Palisade's sales team has been retrained as territory managers who work with channel partners to secure opportunities, he said. "Any opportunity that was generated by a direct sales rep gets passed to a channel partner to close, regardless of how much input [the partner] had on the opportunity."

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Palisade offers 40 percent margin to partners on all sales, and the PacketSure solution offers partners the ability to provide value-added services such as PCI (Payment Card Industry) assessment and risk analysis, Erskine said.

Palisade follows through on its promises to partners, which sets it apart from other vendors, whose pledges to the channel may not always ring true, Collins said. "Palisade has brought us into several deals that they have pushed to the channel, and they didn't have to do that," he said.