Parag Patel, senior vice president of channel sales for Forcepoint, speaks to Channel Post MEA about Forcepoint’s enhanced channel partner program.
Forcepoint announced the enhanced channel partner program. Tell us about it and how is it different from before?
We have strategically invested in enhancing our global channel partner program with the aim of simplifying how partners work with us while creating significant new business and revenue growth pathways. The Forcepoint Global Partner Program has been enhanced with the addition of an exclusive category of Titanium partners that provide the highest levels of technical expertise and services. In addition, we are automating our support infrastructure and establishing a more efficient engagement model with broader incentives, making it easier to work with us while empowering our partners at all levels to generate better customer value.
The top three takeaways from our enhanced channel partner program can be summarised as follows –
• As part of the enhanced program, partners have a huge opportunity to build out services growth.
o We are de-emphasising our in-house services and will make investments to help partners build a Forcepoint Services Practices, increase their skills in our SASE portfolio, and better enable our mutual customers to deploy a robust cybersecurity infrastructure.
• Our partners will benefit from predictable profitability.
o The enhanced program has higher Deal Registration discounts – the primary mechanism for partner profitability – on top of competitive standard discounts. For the highest level of partners (Titanium), the annual growth-based Rebate is designed to offer an additional important source of profit.
• We will be supporting partners let down and left behind by legacy cybersecurity vendors’ restructuring.
o We are making significant investments in our tools, systems and partner portal to become easier-to-do-business with. Partners will find it easier and faster to do Deal Registrations, manage their business with Forcepoint, obtain training, access premium technical content, integrate the quoting and ordering process with Distributor systems, and automate other activities.
How will the new program benefit the channel partners in the Middle East?
The enhancements to the Global Partner Program are based on the guiding concepts of simplicity, growth, and partner-led services to guarantee clients have access to the required security expertise and support, when they need it. We have also made sales enablement more effective while helping partners to differentiate themselves based on their portfolio certification, technical capabilities, and services supplied to protect data and enhance business momentum for Middle East organisations of all sizes.
How important are channel partners for Forcepoint in the region?
Channel partners are considered as key stakeholders both here in the region and globally, and our partner-led development program is at the heart of our approach. We see partners as critical to the company’s go-to-market strategy in securing today’s hybrid workplace, since the channel accounts for roughly 98 percent of our commercial revenue. The company’s net new business has grown nearly 50 percent in the last year as a result of momentum created by partners switching from legacy cybersecurity vendors to resell Forcepoint’s unique Data-first Secure Access Service Edge (SASE) platform.
Much like the rest of the world, in the ME region, our channel community functions as an ecosystem of strategic consultative partners who work to transform industries with modern cybersecurity solutions needed to mitigate today’s sophisticated threat landscape. In this age of distributed enterprises tackling increasingly sophisticated global business challenges, we can help mitigate the situation for our mutual customers by working closely with our trusted partners.
Let me conclude by reiterating our commitment to our regional partners – our participation at the recently held GITEX 2021 was in partnership with two of our trusted distributor partners – Starlink and Mindware.
Would you like to share any other information with our readers?
At Forcepoint, we understand our channel partners and know what they are looking for – to be well supported and understood, in a busy operating environment, with abundant opportunities to profit from selling market-leading technologies and solutions. We have based our approach in terms of Routes-to-Market and rebuilt the program accordingly. We are offering incentives, resources and training support which we know will optimise value to both customers and to our partners’ bottom line.