Check Point Software is seeking to boost its base of non-accredited resellers as it looks to expand into the SME sector.
The network security vendor will recruit unlicensed resellers through distributors Unipalm and Allaso, to sit alongside its three-tier partner programme to target non-traditional markets.
Tariq Ahmed, sales manager of Northern Europe at Check Point Software, told PC Dealer: 'Our ultimate focus is on our premier and authorised resellers, but at the same time, we need to make contact with as many resellers as possible. Our accredited resellers are not the biggest in the world and there are still a lot of smaller companies that require network security.'
Ahmed added that Check Point will increase its pool of licensed partners in an attempt to eliminate the market perception of the vendor as a firewall-only supplier.
He said: 'We need to refocus our channel partners on our message. They have been very successful in branding Firewall-1, but from 1996 we diversified into other areas such as bandwidth management. We need to re-educate our channel and tell it we are more than a firewall company.'
Check Point will expand its three-tier accreditation by increasing its premier partners from 10 to 15, while the number of authorised partners will be notched up to about 70 from 50.
Ahmed denied that the move would lead to a watering down of the accreditation standard. 'We are not in the business of flooding the market - all we want are good resellers,' he said.
The vendor is also opening up its 24-hour support centre in Dallas to authorised partners as well as to distributors. 'This will enable resellers to sell support as part of the overall services package,' Ahmed added.
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