Vendor AEP Systems is aiming for success in the UK public sector in 2005 with its latest Secure Socket Layer (SSL) VPN product.
The firm, formed following the merger of Netilla Networks and AEP in December last year, is looking to ramp up sales of its flagship net product through the channel.
Reggie Best, former chief executive of Netilla Networks and now executive vice-president of the marketing and secure application access business unit at AEP, said the integration of the two companies is going well.
"This merger has extended the opportunity for all Netilla and AEP partners, allowing them to pick up an SSL VPN that is targeted at the public sector," he said.
Best added that the firm will launch marketing programmes in the coming months to raise end-user awareness of its products and will be handing all leads over to its certified partner network.
He also said the firm has new products in the pipeline, which it will be announcing over the course of 2005.
Best claimed "communication with resellers" and providing a "secure infrastructure for corporate and public-sector customers" are the firm's main objectives.
"We will be working with all resellers as we have to stabilise the groups each side of the merger. Our first step is to bring them all together. However, we are always looking to add good VARs and system integrators," he said.
Best admitted that there have been some difficulties with AEP?s distribution as a result of the merger, but claimed that the firm has now "resolved [all] issues".
"Netilla distributed through Risc, Allasso and Wick Hill, and AEP used e92plus. AEP will be supporting all four of those distribution partners. It has taken some discussion, but we have got everyone on a level playing field and reached an understanding," he said.
But Kay Egglestone, country manager at distributor Risc Technology, claimed the vendor is over-distributed.
"We were not so happy to hear it has retained four disties," she said. "It is too many for the business it is doing in the UK."
However, she said the vendor does have a good product offering. "AEP's SSL VPN product had some good functionality, which will be included in the Netilla box, so the combination will be strong. As long as the distribution situation is sorted out, the merged company will definitely be a good thing," she said.
Today saw 14 of the UK IT channel's biggest hitters come together to determine the winners of CRN's WiC awards. But what does being a WiC judge actually involve? Doug Woodburn reports
'Smaller firms may struggle to keep up with Microsoft's innovation with Dynamics' says CEO Stuart Fenton after acquiring assets from Profile Enterprise Solutions
Pete Peterson admits the firm hasn't always been the 'easiest company to do business with'
New chief exec Aaron Painter says 'longer-term strategy' could see firm tackle the Asian market