Trellix XDR Must Earn Trust From MSSPs Who Were Skeptical Of McAfee Enterprise and FireEye

The merger of McAfee Enterprise and FireEye, backed by private equity firm Symphony Technology Group (STG), has rebranded as Trellix and bet the business on eXtended Detection and Response (XDR) security solutions.

In a related spin-off, STG plans to launch the McAfee Enterprise Secure Service Edge (SSE) portfolio as a separate business later this quarter, inclusive of Cloud Access Security Broker (CASB), Secure Web Gateway (SWG) and Zero Trust Network Access (ZTNA), the private equity firm said.

The Trellix name, STG indicated, “evokes the structure of a trellis, a strong and safe framework used to support structured growth of climbing plants and trees. Trellix will deliver its brand promise to build resilient and confident organizations through living security—security technology that learns and adapts to protect operations from the most advanced threat actors.​”

The Trellix business spans 40,000 customers and 5,000 employees, and generates nearly $2 billion in annual revenue, STG said during the M&A announcement in 2021.

Trellix XDR Must Overcome Previous Channel and MSSP Missteps

Pre-merger, both McAfee Enterprise and FireEye Products occasionally strayed from their channel partner commitments over the years — though both firms took steps to solidify MSSP and MSP relations ahead of the 2021 M&A deal and resulting Trellix brand launch.

McAfee’s partner missteps over the years include acquiring, mismanaging then shutting down MX Logic, one of the first security software businesses for MSPs. FireEye, meanwhile, occasionally competed with security service providers and consulting firms by acquiring Mandiant in 2014. Mandiant was not part of the McAfee Enterprise-FireEye Product merger, and instead remains an independent security business.

In a prepared statement about the Trellix brand launch, STG Managing Partner William Chisholm said:

“We are incredibly excited to have Trellix​ in the STG portfolio. Customers can expect Trellix’s living security platform to deliver bold innovation across the XDR market.”

Added Trellix CEO Bryan Palma:

“As today’s organizations push to achieve digital transformation, a strong security foundation is required to ensure continued innovation, growth and resiliency. Trellix’s XDR platform protects our customers as we bring security to life with automation, machine learning, extensible architecture, and threat intelligence.”

Palma shared more context about Trellix in this blog. Also, partner program information is here.

XDR Security Market Growth and Competition

No doubt, the XDR market is growing rapidly but competition also has intensified. More than nine in 10 organizations were either working on an XDR project or planning an XDR investment by late 2021, according to an ESG Research survey sponsored by security provider Hunters.

Amid that market reality, just about every type of security company — endpoint, network and cloud — has been marching toward XDR capabilities. Recent moves include Cybereason launching a ‘Pay as You Grow’ XDR partner program capability for MSSPs.

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