iPolicy Networks Prepares Itself For Take-Off

In the past three months, the company has built up its enterprise sales teaMandAmp;#8212;including the addition of a director of channel sales—and grown its partner ranks to 20 solution providers, up from four.

The changes coincide with the naming of Peter Moulds as vice president of worldwide sales. Moulds said the Fremont, Calif.-based company aims to have 60 partners on board by year's end and hopes to push the percentage of sales that come through the channel to 75 percent or more over the next six to nine months, up from about 50 percent now.

This also comes as iPolicy is ramping up plans to push into the enterprise market, an effort that began at the end of 2004. From its founding in 2000 until that point, the company had focused on the carrier market. Now that its technology has moved downstream, the company is concentrating on its channel partnerships, Moulds said.

"Over the past year and a half, our product line has been modified and [given new features] to address the enterprise," Moulds said. "It's evolved into something that's channel-ready."

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While some large service provider customer accounts will remain direct, all of the vendor's enterprise business will move through the channel, Moulds said. "There's a huge market out there untapped for us, so there's certainly market share to be gained by tapping these channels," he said.

Channel partners that sign on will find that working with iPolicy gives them access to a differentiated product line with attractive margins that is not over-distributed, he said.

IPolicy's family of Intrusion Prevention Firewall appliances employs its Single Pass Architecture.

"In one inspection of each packet, we can do a complete analysis from Layer 2 through Layer 7," said Gajraj Singh, vice president of marketing at iPolicy.

In addition, the product line supports virtualization across devices, which means customers with multiple locations can manage the entire department with a singular policy control, Singh said.

Mike Eberhardt, marketing manager at Intelli-Tech, a La Verne, Calif.-based solution provider, said it has seen a particularly strong fit for iPolicy's intrusion detection and prevention technology in the education market, where budgets can be strained.

In one recent customer win, Intelli-Tech deployed iPolicy for the Los Angeles Community College District, a group of 11 California colleges.

"It was a brand-new area for them, but they saw a need due to the amount of spam and hacking out there. [IPolicy products] will block a lot of that," Eberhardt said of the $300,000 product sale.

Eberhardt said iPolicy also is a strong partner to Intelli-Tech, participating in its vendor marketing events and joint sales calls.

IPolicy's Moulds said the company's Premier Channel Partner program includes discounts of up to 50 percent, as well as market development funds for partners.

"The approach here is very grassroots," Singh said. "We're working with our partners to first find out what local marketing programs have worked for them in the past. Then we're building a marketing road map with them," he said.

As a startup in the intrusion detection and prevention system market, iPolicy boasts that its channel is not over-distributed like some of its competitors. "We're a newer player in the space. There are some brand names out there that are so highly distributed [that it creates] channel conflict," Moulds said.

IPolicy currently counts more than 100 companies among its customer base. Its sweet spot is midsize enterprises with 1,500 or fewer employees and with at least five locations, company executives said.

Pricing for iPolicy's Intrusion Prevention Firewall appliances starts at $5,000 for the 2000 Series with throughput of up to 140 Mbits per second (Mbps) at the low-end, and $60,000 to $110,000 base pricing for its high-end 6400 Series.