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Traffic Management Provider NS1 Launches First-Ever Channel Program: Exclusive

‘For FY 2020, our goal is to have the channel and strategic partners to drive and source 50 percent of the qualified pipeline and revenue for our new business line,’ says Warren Mead, vice president of channel partnerships for application traffic management specialist NS1.

NS1, a provider of application traffic management solutions, wasn't doing any business at all through the channel - until now.

The company is now offering its traffic-steering solutions tied to Cisco's security portfolio, so the time was right to bring the offering to the channel, said Warren Mead, vice president of channel partnerships for NS1.

The six-year-old company on Tuesday launched a global channel program aimed at recruiting systems integrators, VARs, and MSPs.

"For FY 2020, our goal is to have the channel and strategic partners to drive and source 50 percent of the qualified pipeline and revenue for our new business line," Mead said.

[Related: The Top 10 Networking Company Acquisitions Of 2019 (So Far)]

NS1 is a Cisco partner and part of the Cisco Security Technology Alliance. The company has integrated its traffic-steering solutions with Cisco Umbrella, Cisco's cloud-based network security platform, which helps protect enterprises from DNS-focused attacks because every NS1 DNS query originating from an enterprise network is examined and can be stopped from using connections to known or suspected malicious sites, the company said.

"This is a great combination to bring to the channel. It's a nice attached play for partners selling both network and security solutions," Mead said. "It's a nice attach play in an annuity model that partners can wrap services around."

The new partner program will give the channel access to NS1's

Domain Name System (DNS) and IP Address Management (IPAM) solutions for application traffic automation, security, and management, the New York City-based company said.

Part of NS1's partner efforts include a newly-inked distribution agreement with Promark Technology, a U.S.-focused distributor and subsidiary of Ingram Micro. NS1 chose Promark as one of its early partners because the distributor can help NS1 identify the right partners -- those with network and security practices today, Mead said.

"Ingram gives us scale in the channel and Promark is really good at bringing new technology to the market," he said. NS1 is specifically seeking partners that provide solutions for cloud, DevOps or SD-WAN today, as well as those selling application performance management solutions.

Promark, which specializes in incubating emerging technologies, will be working with NS1 to extend the reach of its solutions to more customers looking to transform and modernize their IT environments, said Jeffrey Brown, president of Promark.

"For us, NS1 really fills the [application and traffic management] niche," Brown said. "We work a lot with emerging vendors, and from Day One, NS1 really get the channel and distribution, and it's helping to accelerate their launch with us."

Promark also has a close relationship with Cisco through Ingram Micro, which makes NS1's solutions an easier sell for many partners, Brown said.

For partners, the new channel portal includes deal registration and access to resources. Partners can also tap into joint marketing and demand generation tools. "We're trying to make this program as frictionless as possible," NS1's Mead said.

Mead has brought on a channel manager for the EMEA region and he will building out the U.S. channel team with five new managers to be added by the end of the year, he said.

Mead, who is leading NS1's channel efforts, joined the company six months ago. The tech veteran is experienced in building out channel programs. Prior to his position with NS1, Mead served as vice president of business development and channel sales for Nasuni, a cloud-based file storage service based in Boston. He also worked for cloud monitoring technology firm Exoprise as its vice president of sales and business development, and for Oracle as a national sales and channel director.

NS1 last week announced it raised a $33 million in a Series C funding. The latest round of funding was led by Dell Technologies Capital, with participation from Cisco Investments and existing investors Deutsche Telekom Capital Partners, Entrée Capital, Flybridge Capital Partners, GGV Capital, Mango Capital, Salesforce Ventures, Sigma Prime Ventures, Telstra Ventures, and Two Sigma Ventures.

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