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Cybereason Snags Channel Leaders From Check Point, Fortinet

Cybereason has brought on Abigail Maines and Stephen Tallent to boost channel profitability, drive synergy with the commercial sales team and identity partners interested in detection and response services.

Cybereason has recruited Check Point channel leader Abigail Maines and Fortinet veteran Stephen Tallent to oversee traditional channels and MSSPs in North America, respectively.

The Boston-based endpoint security vendor has tapped Maines and Tallent to boost solution provider profitability, drive synergy with the commercial sales organization, and identify partners interested in detection and response services. Maines and Tallent started at Cybereason on Feb. 8 and Feb. 17, respectively, and both report into Eric Appel, SVP and GM for North American sales.

“The product has really been embraced by MSSPs addressing different markets,” Tallent told CRN.

[Related: Cybereason Designates Oracle Cloud As Its Preferred Platform Under New Strategic Alliance]

Tallent spent the past nearly nine years overseeing MSSPs and service enablement globally for Fortinet, while Maines spent the past year-and-a-half as Check Point’s Americas channel chief. The two are being joined by Ahmed Saleh, who’s overseeing incident response services in the region. Maines is taking over for Joe O’Donnell, who left Cybereason in November to become Splunk’s field security solutions sales leader.

At Cybereason, Maines is responsible for leading the company’s traditional VAR channels in North America as well as overseeing the commercial sales business for customers with 2,500 or fewer users. Cybereason has committed to selling exclusively through the channel over the past year, and Maines said the company plans to work strategically with between 50 and 100 channel partners in the region.

Cybereason’s relationships with global systems integrators (GSIs) are stronger in other parts of the world today, and Maines said she wants to bring more GSI business into North America. The company is most interested in adding channel partners who see the value in data and prioritize and identify with an operation-centric approach, according to Maines.

The company’s technology can help traditional IT and security VARs alike dramatically reduce the mean time to resolution for customers deals with security issues, according to Maines. Vendors with an operations-centric approach to endpoint security and a strong focus on data have been a significant acquisition target as of late, Maines said.

Maines plans to bring a stronger and more aggressive focus on solution provider profitability to the table by delivering partner program enhancements and modifying rules of engagement for the company’s field sales force to create a more predictable and transparent sales cycle. Cybereason also plans to leverage distribution through a partnership with Synnex to improve the ease of doing business.

Cybereason wants to get its direct sales and channel functions operating together and expand its North American customer base beyond larger enterprises and scale its commercial business by sharing more leads with strategic channel partners in that segment. From a metrics standpoint, Maines said she’s most focused on partner profitability, partner net promoter scores (NPS), and growth in the market.

As for Tallent, he’s most focused on working with mid-enterprise and enterprise MSSPs who are shifting away from security asset management and toward detection and response. These partners need a cohesive path for remaining profitable as they shift from red light, green light-type monitoring toward an active detection and response methodology, according to Tallent.

Ninety percent of security buyers are looking to outsource detection and response services in the next four years, Tallent said. Given how relatively easy security asset management is, Tallent said detection and response work is a better business with healthier margins for the channel going forward.

Tallent plans to work hard and remove technical barriers so that MSSPs can more easily onboard and integrate Cybereason. Much of this will be focused on shifting to a simple, device-based consumption monthly billing model from a more traditional subscription-based model, meaning that MSSPs will now be able to buy Cybereason’s technology the same way they sell it with less upfront capital investment.

All told, Tallent said Cybereason’s military-grade technology is designed to empower defenders against nation-state level threats. “I’m fired up to be here,” Tallent said.

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