Making Forefront Sweeter for Partners
The deals to entice partners to pitch Microsoft's new Forefront security line
just got sweeter.
Microsoft on Thursday announced an increase in the advisory fees paid under
its Security Software Advisor (SSA) program and an expansion of the program
to include enterprise licensing agreements.
Microsoft is unaccustomed to paying such high percentages of its licensing
revenue back to partners who influence sales, although the company has some
similar programs in other product lines. Microsoft's preferred model involves
taking its own revenues from license sales, with a slight margin going back
to distributors, and leaving it up to partners to figure out how to add value
in consulting services, installation and maintenance services, hardware sales,
customization or add-on applications.
What's different here is that Microsoft is angling to take a big piece of the
enterprise security market from major competitors, and that's the way business
is done in this market. While Microsoft has been selling Internet Security &
Acceleration Server for some time, it is new to the market with the Antigen
product line it acquired from Sybari and its Forefront brand of enterprise security
When the SSA program launched in July, Microsoft's advisory fees topped out
at 20 percent, although partners who signed on to the program in the first 90
days were eligible for an additional 10 percent. Now that 30 percent is a permanent
fixture of the program. Originally, the agreement only covered purchases under
the Open, Select A and Select B licensing programs. Now the advisory fees are
also available to partners with customers purchasing Forefront products under
Select C, Select D and Enterprise Agreements.
To qualify for the fee, a partner must belong to the Security Software Advisor
program. There are currently 1,700 partners in the program. To join the program,
a partner must be a Registered Member of the Microsoft Partner Program and have
either the Security Solutions Competency or be a member of the former Sybari
partner program or a top-tier member of another security vendor's partner program.
You can read Microsoft's announcement here.
See Lee Pender's feature
on Microsoft's security strategy from the Redmond Channel Partner magazine
Is Microsoft making the right moves to help you sell its fledgling enterprise
security software? I'd like to hear your opinion at [email protected].
Posted by Scott Bekker on December 14, 2006 at 11:57 AM