Kaspersky Partner Conference: 5 Things Partners Can Expect

CRN caught up with Gary Abad, Kaspersky's vice president of North American Channels, to get a sneak peek at what partners can expect to see and hear in Mexico this week. Here are five things partners can expect, aside from much-needed fun in the sun:

1. An update on Kaspersky's channel strategy: Kaspersky is 100 percent channel driven, so it relies on its partners for revenue and growth. "All of our revenue is indirect," Abad said. "When we say the channels are everything, we really do mean it." At the Kaspersky Partner Conference, partners will get a look at the channel initiatives the Russian security player has planned for 2011. While Abad couldn't spill the beans on exactly what kind of initiatives Kaspersky has up its sleeve, he said partners can look for new opportunities.

2. Market insight: Kaspersky doesn't exist in a vacuum. Abad said the company will give partners a sense of the market as a whole and where Kaspersky fits. "We don't want this to be all Kaspersky all the time. They need to know about the markets they serve," he said. Understanding the market provides insight into where Kaspersky is going and where it is investing, and partners can leverage that information and use it in their own businesses, Abad said.

3. An update on Kaspersky's growth: Kaspersky is growing at a rapid clip. "We're outpacing our market," Abad said. And at its annual partner conference the company will illustrate how its growing and help partners prepare for future growth, he added.

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A December 2010 IDC report shows that the company grew by 44.5 percent in 2009 and held a 5.8 percent overall market share. Partners will get up to speed on how Kaspersky is handling that swift growth, Abad said. They will also be introduced to new team members; Abad said Kaspersky has hired a host of new people to its corporate sales team.

4. Market segmentation: Last year, Kaspersky focused heavily on how the security player plans to attack enterprise accounts. That message will continue into the 2011 conference, but Abad said Kaspersky will give partners the rundown of how it plans to succeed not only in the enterprise, but also in small- and mid-sized businesses. Kaspersky will share with partners "how we are going to attack these markets," he said.

5. The download on the General Atlantic investment: Last month, private investment firm General Atlantic became the second largest shareholder in Kaspersky, making it No. 2 only to founder and CEO Eugene Kaspersky. Kaspersky hasn't said how much of a stake General Atlantic owns. Abad said the General Atlantic investment will be a key topic of discussion at this week's Kaspersky Partner Conference as partners determine what it means for their businesses and discuss its significance. According to Abad, partners will see the investment as a boost. "The GA investment is really going to bring more expertise," he said, calling General Atlantic's investment a "huge vote of confidence" for Kaspersky.