Kaspersky Aims To Jump Ahead Of Trend Micro

During Kaspersky Lab's Americas Partner Conference, held in Punta Cana, Dominican Republic, top executives told more than 300 attending channel partners that the company was primed to capture more business and said they have designs to be No. 1 in the endpoint security space by 2014.

Executives said that the company had a good start with record growth over the last few years. In 2008, the company experienced more than 70 percent growth in the consumer sector. Despite a worldwide recession, the company grew 30 percent in 2009, and executives are anticipating growth of 35 percent in 2010, said Kaspersky Lab Chief Operating Officer Eugene Buyakin, during a keynote presentation Friday.

Because of its rapid growth, Kaspersky endpoint security market share increased to 6 percent in 2009, up from around 4 percent the previous year. Meanwhile, market share for Trend Micro -- No. 3 of the "Big Three" security companies -- fell slightly from more than 7 percent to 6.9 percent, Buyakin said. In addition, Symantec's endpoint security market share fell from 38 percent to 31 percent in endpoint security in 2009.

"The biggest challenge is, on the one hand, we need to create the foundation for future growth and build future technologies," said Buyakin, during a conference presentation. "At the same time, we have to grow right now, right here. It's really balancing long-term and short-term goals."

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Helped by being headquartered in Moscow, the company experienced some of its fastest growth in Europe, increasing sales by 45 percent. The company experienced its second fast growth in the Americas, growing revenue by 26 percent.

"For our competitors, the fastest-growing region was all parts of the Americas," Buyakin said. "We have the opposite situation. For us, it's the main territory where we're [beginning to grow]."

To manage that growth, executives said that they were restructuring the organization to meet the evolving needs.

"The idea was to create a better organization for our long-term goals," Buyakin said. "We want to be the market leader in continued threat management. We don't want to only be the leader in terms of market share. In terms of brand, in terms of technology, in terms of thought leadership, we can help to make the Internet a safer place. That's why we want to be a leader in this industry."

Going forward, Kaspersky Lab will put more emphasis on its channel marketing efforts in the Americas, with new and innovative ideas for developing a recognizable brand.

Stephen Orenberg, Kaspersky Lab Americas president, said that, in addition, the company planned a 25 percent headcount increase this year in the Americas, while continuing to focus on Latin America for channel expansion.

Orenberg said that the brand awareness was spurred by the company's 77 percent growth in the retail sector last year.

"What that's done is created a groundswell of awareness," he said. "2009 really hit a critical mass; it was a tremendous year."

Executives said that one of the reasons for the company's continued success was, in part, due to a cohesive corporate culture, or "company spirit."

"The key factor of our success is team spirit; it's a group of people which made the 'mistake' of joining the same team," said Kaspersky Lab CEO Eugene Kaspersky, adding that one of the biggest goals would be to "keep the company as one piece."

"It's the same team of the same people," Kaspersky said. "We're 'infecting you.'"