Fortinet has recently added an entry-level tier and consumption-based licensing to its MSSP program in order to make it simple for product-centric value-added resellers in establishing managed security services.
According to the platform security vendor, adding a third tier to the current two tiers of its MSSP program will make it possible for channel partners to harness the program's tools and customer support.
Previously, the program used to have just two tiers–Platinum and Gold. In order to obtain gold, the partners needed around US$500,000 of Fortinet-related sales, about four certified network security professionals, and two certified network security management workers. After adding the Silver tier, the prospects of Fortinet bringing in 200 to 300 more North American partners to accompany the existing 220 Platinum and Gold partners in the region have increased drastically.
The third tier targets to make it easy for product-centric VARs that suffer from margin compression in their legacy business to get into services. The average margin for managed security services is around 50 points, as opposed to just 14 points for classic resale activity.
Fortinet's MSSP operation has grown significantly from a single-person operation to a team of eleven capable of dealing with a broader market and audience. Almost half of the team is focused on the engineering aspect such as multi-tenancy automation and gaining efficiencies in a multi-tenant environment, while the remaining half serves the business aspects involved such as financial challenges of creating a managed services practice.