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Unitrends revamps enterprise backup solutions program in wake of merger

Unitrends revised its channel partner program, adding new tiers and benefits for its legacy partners, as well as incentives for Kaseya MSP partners to join; other news from the week.

Enterprise backup solutions company Unitrends has revamped its partner program following its merger with Kaseya, a provider of management software for managed service providers.

The Kaseya-Unitrends merger, revealed in May, yielded a portfolio spanning remote monitoring and management, endpoint management, network monitoring and management, professional services automation, security, and enterprise backup solutions. According to Unitrends, which runs as an independent company inside Kaseya, the redesigned channel program aims to enhance partner benefits and support for legacy Unitrends partners, while tapping into the Kaseya MSP community.

The redesigned program also reflects the shift away from Unitrends' previous volume-based channel strategy in which the vendor sought to "recruit a large number of partners, large and small, across various geographies," said Dante Gordon, senior director of channel marketing at Unitrends, based in Burlington, Mass.

"It is not a volume play anymore. We are not looking at adding partners for the sake of adding numbers," he added. "A key tenet of the program is ensuring that we are delivering one of the most profitable programs in our industry for partners, and one of the ways we do that is ensuring we are not saturating the market ... and eroding margins."

The Unitrends channel program now features a four-tiered membership structure of Authorized, Silver, Gold and Platinum levels, offering incremental discounts and incentives, among other benefits.

"What we have done with the new program is we have established partner segmentation and ... tiers based on partners' investment and commitment to building a practice around Unitrends," Gordon said.

Program benefits include a proposal-based market development funds (MDF) program.

"Unlike a lot of vendors, we don't allocate MDF based on a percent of bookings or revenue. ... Any partner in our Gold and Platinum tiers has the ability to submit a proposal for MDF dollars that they want to apply to a particular marketing campaign."

Unitrends' partners can also tap a new cloud-based partner portal containing a library of marketing materials, such as packaged campaigns that partners can white label. Additionally, Unitrends said it will soon roll out a marketing automation service for email campaigns.

As for Kaseya MSP partners, Unitrends said it will extend Gold-level program benefits to Kaseya MSP partners for a limited time. Those benefits include access to MDF, dedicated channel managers and lead referrals.

Gordon said Kaseya MSP partners, which tend to target the small and medium-sized business space, are complementary to Unitrends' midmarket focus. He noted that he also sees the merger as an opportunity for Unitrends' traditional resellers to use Kaseya's offerings to incorporate managed services into their businesses.

Other news

  • Winxnet Inc., an IT consulting and outsourcing firm based in Portland, Maine, has merged with K&R Network Solutions, a San Diego-based managed IT services provider. The companies said the combination will create a coast-to-coast MSP company. The deal follows a strategic alliance between the companies that was announced in January 2018. The Winxnet-K&R merger continues a trend of mergers and acquisitions in the IT services industry. Other recent transactions, such as the Green House Data merger with Infront Consulting Group Ltd., were also motivated by geographic reach.
  • In other financial news, Primepulse SE, an investment holding group based in Munich, has invested in Unify Square, a cloud managed services provider for Microsoft Teams and Skype for Business. The funding round is roughly $10 million, according to Unify Square, which is based in Bellevue, Wash.
  • Tech Mahindra, a consulting and digital transformation services provider, is partnering with LIFARS LLC, a cybersecurity digital forensics and incident response The companies plan to combine Tech Mahindra's security operations center offering with LIFARS incident response service for their customers.
  • SolarWinds MSP, an IT service management solution provider targeting service providers, unveiled MSP Institute, a training and tips playbook for MSPs. The playbook will include business, sales, marketing and technical tracks.

Market Share is a news roundup published every Friday.

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How does the Unitrends-Kaseya MSP portfolio compare with that of Datto-Autotask?
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