CRN Exclusive: HPE-Fortinet Bundle To Marry Firewall, Log Management Capabilities

Hewlett Packard Enterprise and Fortinet have joined forces on a security offering aimed at giving customers better visibility into and control over security threats.

The bundle, which will be unveiled during RSA Conference 2016 in San Francisco, will allow clients in heavily regulated verticals -- such as health care, financial services and retail -- to leverage deep-analysis reporting for a more comprehensive view of potential problems across an ever-expanding attack surface.

"We have excellent complementary solutions that can address an urgent need in the midsize enterprise space," Jaweed Metz, a product marketing manager for HPE's enterprise security products, told CRN exclusively.

[Related: Fortinet Reorganizes Sales Force, Says Partner Organization Is Not Affected]

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Joining Palo Alto, Calif.-based HPE's log management platform with Sunnyvale, Calif.-based Fortinet’s enterprise firewalls makes it possible to collect, store, analyze and report on what's happening in end users' networks, Metz said, enabling partners to better address vulnerabilities as soon as they are found. The bundle is intended for customer ecosystems with 1,000 to 5,000 end users, he said.

Though the bundle is primarily a one-time sale, partners can generate some recurring revenue by upselling end users on related security subscription services that get renewed each year, John Maddison, Fortinet's senior vice president of products and solutions, told CRN.

The companies are offering promotional pricing around the bundle, Metz said, though he declined to disclose what types of margins partners can expect.

Metz said he expects the offering to be deployed in a multitude of settings, from clinics and medical offices to credit unions and small regional banks to multilocation retailers. The offering should also gain traction in other security-conscious verticals such as education, energy, manufacturing and construction, he said.

The bundle will be offered exclusively through Centennial, Colo.-based distributor Arrow Electronics for 60 days, and available only to partners in the United States and Canada, Metz said. HPE and Fortinet plan to roll the bundle out to other parts of the world in the second half of 2016, Metz said, which will likely entail bringing additional distributors onboard.

The companies hope to have 50 to 100 solution provider partners carrying the offering within the next 12 months, starting with channel giants such as New York-based Dimension Data, No. 10 on the CRN Solution Provider 500, and Denver-based Optiv Security, No. 26 on the SP 500.

Metz said the companies want to initially partner with a sufficient level of resources to get out of the gate quickly, but will eventually consider using small and midsized partners with deep knowledge of and expertise in the security space.

Arrow has committed marketing dollars and executive-level investment into the product, Metz said, and has worked with both vendors on developing partner training and webcasts around this offering.

The bundle should help fill a gap in Fortinet's line card and enable the vendor to form new relationships with HPE partners and customers, according to Sean Stenovitch, owner of Fortinet Partner M&S Technologies.

"I can kind of see the win-win," Stenovitch said. "It can work out pretty well."

The Farmers Branch, Texas-based partner, No. 335 on the CRN SP 500, said he hopes the companies will broaden their use of distributors as the product gains more traction. While M&S has a relationship with Arrow, Stenovitch said his company works more with other distributors.

"I'm sure the other distributors will voice their concerns," he said.