FireEye has pledged to make itself more accessible to the channel as it targets markets below its traditional enterprise space.
The advanced threat protection specialist was the hottest property in cybersecurity when it launched its IPO in 2013, but has endured a difficult spell in recent years as its share price plummeted, culminating in a wave of cost cuts earlier this year.
Kevin Mandia was brought in as CEO to turn the vendor's fortunes around and admitted to CRN that FireEye hasn't best utilised its channel in the past, and explained plans to make itself more accessible to mid-market organisations and channel players.
FireEye has often been accused by the channel of being out reach for a lot companies with limited budgets.
"You look at FireEye's strength - it's the enterprise, it's large organisations that care about security and want to safeguard their assets from the best hackers in the world," Mandia said.
"We'd like to bring that capability to a lot of more cost-conscious organisations and we haven't been able to do that in the past just based on our own cost structure.
"We shipped heavy appliances, we didn't have software, we were high priced - and for a blend of reasons I wanted to first leverage the channel to get the markets we're not in, and make changes to our product so we could do it at the right price point. We've done that change well.
"We're going into next year with a product that is more appropriately priced to the channel."
"When we started we went too thin, too wide, too quick"
As part of its new channel approach, FireEye will now work with Arrow as its sole pan-European distributor, having previously worked with both Arrow and Exclusive Networks.
FireEye's EMEA distribution manager Jon Kane told CRN that the firm is looking to better utilise the services offered by its distributors so its internal account managers can focus more on a select few of the more established partnerships.
"When we started we went too thin, too wide, too quick," he said. "We spread ourselves way too thin and as a result we have a lot of partners that we've not spent a lot of time and focus on, and that's one of the biggest changes.
"Our focus for 2017 is on concentrating on all those partners that have committed."
While Exclusive no longer works with FireEye in the UK, it has retained the vendor in seven of its 12 European regions and Exclusive COO Barrie Desmond said it is important for the vendor to "demystify" its offering to make it accessible for smaller organisations than it traditionally works with.
"It is [possible to scale FireEye down to the mid-market], if they give the channel the opportunity to invest with them," he said.
"Certainly the cloud will give everybody the opportunity in the mid-market."
"There's a lot of value in the FireEye solution [but] it's quite complicated; that's why it's normally for enterprises, so we have to demystify that and simplify it for the mid-market. I think cloud and managed services especially are the best way forward."
Competition from emerging vendors
The end-point security market has recently seen a wave of new VC-funded outfits which have frequently locked horns with the so-called old guard.
In a recent article in CRN, Trend Micro's UKI sales director Ross Baker said the firm predicted that a number of these new players - including SentinelOne, Cylance and Crowdstrike - would disappear in a few years' time, "just as we [predicted] with FireEye".
Mandia bullishly defended FireEye's position and suggested that it is partly responsible for the wave of VC and private equity interest in cybersecurity.
"I wouldn't write us off," he said.
"Maybe even FireEye is to blame for the uptick in all these cybersecurity companies.
"When we had a market cap of $16bn, we were worth more than Delta Airlines in 2014, so that brought a whole bunch of venture capital, private equity, and a lot of folks said 'we will solve this cybersecurity problem' and you saw a whole bunch of vendors emerge. So now you have an industry riddled with point products."
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