Symantec's New Strategy Includes Layoffs, Partner Programs

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The changes are a positive development, but the channel will have to wait to see if the company can deliver on its plan, said Andrew Plato, president of Beaverton, Ore.-based Anitian Enterprise Security. A smaller, leaner Symantec can more quickly move to adapt to market changes, Plato said.

"Symantec has basically abandoned the network and left gaping holes in their technologies and ability to respond to the market," Plato said. "Let's see if they really engage the channel like they say they will and their plan actually comes to fruition."

Symantec had shortcomings in both planning and execution, said Allan Krans, a senior analyst at Technology Business Research, Inc. said in a statement about the Symantec changes. The purchases of both Veritas and Altiris were full of potential, but the company stumbled on integration, he said.

"In both cases, execution on sales plans and development synergies between Symantec and acquired portfolios were hindered by distributed management responsibilities," Krans said. "Customer confusion during the transition and the inability of the partner channel to improve corporate wide financial results are both outcomes that mitigated what could have been a pivotal shift for Symantec in its partner strategy."

Symantec said its strategy includes increasing its investment in both research and development as well as homegrown innovation. The company said it would also establish strategic partnerships with which to integrate its products and services.

"Symantec's goal is to continue to improve its existing products and services, and at the same time develop new, innovative products and services that solve important unmet or underserved needs," the company said in its announcement. "Over time customers will have more and better choices that will continue to meet their evolving needs and deliver better value."

The company identified 10 areas that would be its priority moving forward. Mobility, Norton protection, Norton cloud, information security services, identity and content security gateway, and data center security are key areas. It also said business continuity, integrated backup, cloud-based information management and its object storage platform would remain part of its strategy.


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