Channel partners, Content

Fortinet Gains MSP, Public Cloud Security Partner Momentum

Fortinet has longstanding relationships with service providers and MSSPs. And those relationships -- which extend to traditional MSPs -- appear to be getting even stronger, according to financial milestones CFO Keith Jensen shared with Wall Street analysts during an earnings call earlier this month.

Keith Jensen, CFO, Fortinet
Fortinet CFO Keith Jensen

The security company's revenue surged 21 percent to $441.3 million in the second quarter of 2018 compared to the corresponding quarter in 2017. Service providers and MSPs continue to be the company's largest vertical, accounting for 19 percent of billings, up slightly year-over-year, Jensen indicated.

On the cloud front, Fortinet's billings for its top-five public cloud providers experienced triple-digit growth. And recent moves with Google Cloud Platform (GCP) potentially set the stage for more growth in that area. The efforts include Fortinet's next generation firewall, Web application security and analytics expertise.

Multi-Cloud Security: Amazon Web Services, Google Cloud Platform, Microsoft Azure

Like many rivals, the company is pursuing a multi-cloud security strategy. "Fortinet now offers a broader set of security offering of any security vendor on the Google Cloud, Microsoft Azure and AWS platforms," Jensen asserts.

Meanwhile, momentum with midmarket and enterprise customers appears strong. According to Jensen, deals valued at:

  • over $250,000 grew 35 percent;
  • over $500,000 rose 51 percent;
  • over $1 million were up 20 percent.

Back in the classic IT channel, Fortinet is striving to help service-oriented VARs to push deeper into managed security services. The company's partner program earlier this year rolled out a Silver tier specifically gives VARs and aspiring MSSPs key tools and guides to build profitable security practices.

Bradford Networks Acquisition: A Closer Look

And the company's recent Bradford Networks acquisition -- a $17 million deal -- aligns with the Fortinet Security Fabric strategy by converging access control and IoT security solutions. Customers and partners, in turn, gain broader visibility and security for complex networks, Jensen says.

Bradford Networks has 34 employees and the company generated "six figures" for billings and revenue for the quarter, Jensen revealed.

Amid all those milestones, competition still remains intense. Rivals like Barracuda Networks, Cisco Systems, Check Point Software, SonicWall and Sophos also are growing. And several of those companies have pure channel strategies.

Joe Panettieri

Joe Panettieri is co-founder & editorial director of MSSP Alert and ChannelE2E, the two leading news & analysis sites for managed service providers in the cybersecurity market.