Intel Security Unveils New Biz Strategy, Partner Programs For McAfee

Partner Programs

Mumbai: Months after splitting from its parent company Intel, Intel Security recently unveiled new products, renewed security strategy, partner program and logo at its Focus 16 Security Conference organized in Las Vegas. The company did not announced major changes in its channel strategy, escape new Platinum rebate for net new sales that will go live this quarter. The company also announced new partner programs as part of the Intel Security Innovation Alliance, including integration with Check Point, HP Enterprise Aruba and MobileIron.

Intel Security launched an architecture that integrates its four key systems for endpoints, data protection, data center, and cloud and security analytics. The company announced 10 products driven by machine learning malware classification and cloud advanced threat protection. Another initiative announced was the OpenDXL Initative, which provides a standardized application framework to integrate technologies from different vendors and with in-house developed applications.

On the channel front, Intel Security announced that it would follow the existing channel programs as the company did not want to introduced any ‘disruption’ in its channel play at this stage.

“From a channel perspective, as Intel Security we operated the same way we operated before we integrated into Intel. It has been the same group of channel partners throughout. We built in new leadership last year with Richard Steranka – and Ken McCray runs North American channels today. As we become an independent company, we don’t want to introduce any disruptions”, said Chris Young, SVP and GM of the Intel Security Group.

Also Read: How Security Business Consolidation Impacts The Channels

While there are no major changes in the current channel programs, Intel security is working towards reshaping its channel strategy in order to retain its strategic alliance partners.

“The channel program is following the same direction that our strategic partners are already going in, where they are consolidating, going from having many vendors to having as few as five. We want to be one of those strategic vendors. We have been reshaping the channel program as a result – not just around sales capabilities, but service capabilities and managed services capabilities based on our platform”, said Steranka, Head of Global Channel Operations at Intel Security.

We are at the onset of stages where partners can begin to deploy the vision that we shared 18 months ago. That will require a skillset around architecting and deploying those solutions. The vision of where we are taking the platform lends itself to those channel priorities, said Steranka.

This will mean that compulsory alignment around services competencies, in line with sales ones which have already been implemented, will be coming. “Today, Platinum partners need to have three of our sales competencies, and Gold partners need to have one. The services competencies will be aligned to this in the same way”, said Steranka.

Also Read: Intel To Spin Off Its Cyber-Security Unit McAfee

In addition to those areas, McAfee launched a Data Exchange Layer (DXL) that will be opened via partners and integrated with hardware in the field. This DXL layer will include an alliance with partners. Steranka said that Intel Security’s decision to open source DXL would be a big plus for partners.

Intel announced to spin out its security business with help from private equity firm TPG in September. Intel will collect USD 3.1 billion in cash and retain a 49 percent ownership stake. TPG will own 51 percent of the new company, to be called McAfee. Under terms of the spin off, TPG will make a USD 1.1 billion equity investment in McAfee, which will also take on USD 2 billion of debt. The deal is expected to close in the second quarter of 2017.

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