Monday Morning Impact – May 18

Published On: May 18, 2015Categories: Buzz, Uncategorized

By Ken Presti, Senior Consultant, Channel Impact

Fortinet Adds New Certifications and Training

Fortinet has announced changes to its partner program, realigning partner levels and adding new training and certifications.

“As a purely channel-led organization in a dynamic industry like cyber security, it’s important we listen to our partners on a regular basis and make investments in our programs that will enable us to grow our business together by delivering the utmost value to customers,” said Joe Sykora, vice president of channels and operations at Fortinet. “As the cyber threat landscape becomes more complex, we have made changes to our partner program designed to support partner profitability and success, while ensuring the highest levels of security for our joint customers.”

The eight-level Fortinet Network Security Expert (NSE) program, which is provided free-of-charge to all Fortinet partners, is designed to demonstrate a diverse range of critical security skills to better service existing and new customers. In addition, the NSE program offers a number of tangible benefits for partners specific to their level, which include enhanced escalation, invitations to NSE-only events and public recognition for certification. To date, more than 2,000 partners have signed up and begun NSE training, including large global partners like HP, Verizon, AT&T, Sprint, Vodafone, Orange, Hughes, Bell Canada, Dimension Data, Carousel, Ingram Micro, Fujitsu and Bulletproof Solutions.

Fortinet has also redefined its partner levels in order to provide a common global structure. The program offers more clearly differentiated levels that reflect partners’ core competencies and areas of expertise, and is designed to help identify and grow resellers’ service strength and areas of specialty. New partner levels include Platinum partners with consistently high levels of revenue, expertise, and customer satisfaction; Gold partners who have proven their skills in selling the full range of Fortinet solutions on a large number of projects, recognized for customer service and support capabilities and committed to developing new adoption opportunities for Fortinet in their served market; Silver partners, focused primarily on the SMB segment; and also the entry-level Authorized partner status.

Channel Impact
Fortinet has been consistently working to raise its profile and value to channel partners. These initiatives represent the latest installment of that initiative.

Cisco Board Names Chuck Robbins as Next CEO

Cisco Systems has announced that its Board of Directors has appointed Chuck Robbins as the company’s new Chief Executive Officer effective July 26, 2015. Robbins was also elected to the Board of Directors of Cisco, effective May 1, 2015.

Robbins joined Cisco in 1997, serving in channel-focused roles. He most recently served as Cisco’s senior vice president of worldwide operations, leading the company’s global sales and partner team that drives $47B in business for the company. Robbins is also a key architect of the company’s strategy for the commercial business segment, which grew 8% year-over-year last quarter, and now represents 25% of Cisco’s total business. He has also sponsored the security and collaboration businesses at the executive level and was a sponsor for the Sourcefire and Meraki acquisitions.

Cisco also announced that John Chambers, currently CEO and Chairman of the Cisco Board of Directors, will remain on the board and assume the role of Executive Chairman on July 26. Chambers has served as CEO of Cisco since January 1995, having joined the company in 1991 as the head of sales.

Channel Impact
Robbins is an astute industry professional with a strong knowledge of indirect sales, and the Cisco channel, in particular. His rise to chief executive is widely viewed by channel partners as a positive development.

CompTIA Forms New and Emerging Technologies Committee

CompTIA has announced the launch of its New and Emerging Technologies (NET) Committee to address the impacts of social media, big data and data analytics, cloud, mobility, and the Internet of Things. The new committee will be tasked with bringing together the brightest technological minds in industry to help address the current and future emerging technology policy landscape.

“As an organization, we are not only interested where the technology currently is but where the technology is heading. Being able to articulate that to various audiences is a critical component to help the growth of our industry,” stated Elizabeth Hyman, Executive Vice President for CompTIA’s Public Advocacy team.

The new Committee’s areas of focus will include building on the recommendations from the Federal Technology Convergence Commission, providing the Hill guidance on the future impact of the Internet of Things Ecosystem, partnering with the Administration on open data and big data policies, and providing industry best practices to federal agencies. The committee will be led by Tom Woteki, PhD.

Channel Impact
As the technology landscape becomes increasingly complex, discussions like these become critical on multiple levels. The not only provide a venue for discussion and understanding within the industry. They also serve a very useful purpose in helping to guide policy-makers in Washington and elsewhere.


Stay in the Know

Keep tabs on what’s happening in the channel and the impact it will have on the partner community by subscribing to Channel Impact communications.

Recent News

Search Buzz

Buzz Categories