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Symantec Execs: We're Looking To Bring The 'Swagger' Back To Our Security Business

Top Symantec executives took the stage at the company's Partner Engage event to celebrate their new stand-alone security entity and reiterate their dedication to being a 'partner-first' company.

A year after revealing its planned separation from its storage business and just hours after Veritas finished its own separate partner conference, top Symantec executives took the stage Wednesday to celebrate their new stand-alone security company and reiterated their dedication to being a "partner-first" company.

"When we think about Symantec and the transition that we're going through, for you [our partners], this is our coming out party and it's about our partners first," Stephen Thomas, vice president Americas channel sales, said. "I'm excited ... to bring that security swagger back to Symantec."

Held in Orlando, Fla., the 2015 Partner Engage event comes a little more than a week after Symantec completed its operational split from Veritas, the storage division that it said in August it would be selling to private equity investor the Carlyle Group for $8 billion.

[Related: Symantec: Ready To Win Back The Channel's Support As A Security-Only Company]

"Symantec as a company has obviously changed in the last year. We want to be the most focused cybersecurity company on the planet. ... We believe that focus has to be around growth and it has to be around growth with you," Executive Vice President of Sales Adrian Jones said to the more than 240 partner executives in attendance.

Symantec CEO Michael Brown said he recognized that the past year has been challenging for many partners, but he believes the security vendor is on the right path to win, with a new partner program, changes to a subscription-based consumer program, and new enterprise products on the way.

"I realize as we go through this turnaround at Symantec, we haven’t always made it easy," Brown said. "I hope that you feel like we're making the right amount and level of changes to make that successful as we go forward."

Jason Eberhardt, vice president of strategic alliances at Chicago-based Conventus, was at the event and said the changes the company has been making around its partner program and new products are signs of a "rejuvenated" focus on security for Symantec.

"It's very exciting because everything is focused on security," Eberhardt said. "I've been working and tying my brand to Symantec for close to a decade, and it's never been better than it is today."

While the split is only months away from its Jan. 1 legal completion, Brown said there is still work to be done.

"[The split] was not an ultimate step but part of what we need to do to make Symantec successful and, ultimately, you successful," Brown said.

Success for Symantec is dependent on three things, Brown said: great people, a strategy that makes sense, and execution. Some of those pieces already are in place, he said, with new channel-focused leadership additions in recent months and plans in motion to simplify and strategically expand the product lines.

As for execution, Brown said that Symantec is funneling a "tremendous amount" of investment into R&D, as well as making plans for acquisitions early next year after the split is complete.

"The growth is here, the opportunity for us to innovate is here, and we need your help to make that a reality," Brown said.


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