Netskope Unveils New SASE Offering Aimed At Midmarket, MSPs

The vendor is looking to accelerate the expansion of secure access service edge (SASE) from the enterprise to the midmarket level, Netskope CEO Sanjay Beri exclusively tells CRN.

Netskope launched a new version of its secure access service edge offering Monday that caters more effectively to the needs of midmarket customers, the company told CRN exclusively.

In an interview with CRN, Netskope Co-Founder and CEO Sanjay Beri said that the vendor’s new offering aims to accelerate the expansion of SASE from the enterprise, where the approach has become popular in recent years, to the midmarket level. The Netskope SASE for midmarket offering also stands out providing capabilities and pricing tailored to MSPs and MSSPs, which are expected to play a leading role in delivering the technology to midmarket customers, Beri said.

[Related: Netskope CEO Sanjay Beri: We Are ‘World’s Largest Cloud Network’ For Security]

Service providers “want to package a single-vendor platform offering that's simple to their customers,” he told CRN. Netskope has designed its midmarket SASE offering to include “the right price points, the right functionality, truly integrated, delivered from our worldwide infrastructure” and with the requirements of MSPs and MSSPs at the forefront, Beri said.

Demand for SASE has surged among large businesses as they’ve looked to provide distributed workforces with secure access to corporate applications and resources. Netskope is considered a “single-vendor” SASE provider thanks to its integrated platform featuring certain cybersecurity components — known as security service edge (SSE) — combined with SD-WAN.

Key capabilities tailored toward MSPs in the Netskope SASE for midmarket offering include support for multi-tenancy, the company said. Netskope also developed a separate pricing model for MSPs, with options that should appeal to midmarket organizations, Beri said.

Importantly, Netskope’s new SASE offering will enable MSPs to package the offering with their own first-level support, as well, he said. With the offering, “we’ve got the right pricing model and we’ve got the right models for support” to enable MSPs around SASE, Beri said.

Partner Perspective

At Halo Global, an MSP and Netskope partner based in Gladstone, Ore., CEO Darren Carlson said he sees a massive opportunity to bring SASE down from the enterprise level to the midmarket.

“We know every one of these [midmarket] customers needs it as a solution,” Carlson told CRN. “And they've wanted it — they just haven't had an ability to have access to it.”

With its new SASE version, Netskope has designed the offering to enable MSPs such as Halo Global to more easily and cost effectively bring this technology to midmarket-size customers, he said.

Ultimately, “I think the midmarket is going to explode over the next two to three years with this — just because they all need it,” Carlson said.

With a SASE offering tailored to midmarket needs, Beri believes many customers in that segment will gravitate toward the technology because of its effectiveness in securing remote and distributed workforces. Many midmarket organizations are remote- and mobile-enabled at this point, making SASE a natural fit for them, he said.

Netskope’s SASE offering should also prove appealing to these businesses because it provides SD-WAN without the need for a major hardware deployment at branch sites, according to Beri. The offering requires only that customers implement a “very thin device” that offloads as many tasks as possible to the cloud, reducing the need for extensive hardware, he said.

Many midmarket customers are also demanding managed options on security and networking, given the shortage of available talent in the field, which is a main reason why Netskope has focused on enabling MSPs with the new SASE version, Beri said. In tandem with its SASE push, Netskope has heavily invested in training and enablement for MSPs around the technology, he said.

Enabling Distributed Work

Meanwhile, customers and MSPs alike are realizing that simply adopting a managed firewall service is the “wrong solution,” Beri said. Whatever the iteration, traditional firewall technology “doesn't solve the security needs” on its own in the era of distributed work, he noted.

Netskope is also aiming to better enable distributed workplaces by offering improved performance through its SASE for midmarket offering, Beri said. The vendor’s worldwide network is “about 10 milliseconds away from anybody in the world,” he said.

“There's no way a midmarket company could ever attempt to do that themselves,” Beri said. “Now every midmarket company can get the same amazing end-user network [performance] that any large enterprise can get.”

Netskope’s new SASE for midmarket offering is now generally available, the company said Monday.