Aligning for Innovation: Fortinet, Comcast Business, and Exclusive Networks Partnership Sets the Stage for Global Growth

Avatar for William MadisonBy William Madison|May 10, 2023|10:05 am CDT

The Masergy Guardian Portfolio™️ unites the power of Fortinet Secure SD-WAN solutions with network and managed security services from Comcast Business, providing a unique opportunity for value-added resellers (VARs) and managed service providers (MSPs) to capitalize on the fully managed IT services opportunity. With the recent announcement of our partnership with Exclusive Networks, we have taken another step forward in driving multi-vendor managed services through the channel.

Comcast Reseller Community GraphicThe newly formed collaboration between Fortinet, Comcast Business, and Exclusive Networks delivers a new distribution sales route with a frictionless sales and deployment model, adding immediate scale and revenue potential to partners in the high-growth managed network and security services sector.

  • Exclusive Networks’ “services first” ideology is globally orchestrated and locally delivered with a value-driven approach
  • Fortinet’s Secure Networking approach optimizes and defends today’s highly dynamic environments by leveraging FortiGate’s next-gen firewall as the core component
  • Comcast Business is reaching a wider market of customers, tapping into partners and their strong end user relationships

Opportunity on a Global Scale

Globally, the managed services market is in rapid expansion with a staggering 55% of companies looking to add services and improve security for their employees and customers in 2023¹. Companies continue to prioritize solutions that enable IT resource optimization, operational efficiency, and customer experience improvement, as well as support for an increasingly distributed workforce.²

  • 92% of IT leaders are expected to adopt SD-WAN by 2026.³
  • 75% of SD-WAN buyers prefer managed services over a do-it-yourself approach.⁴
  • 79% of companies experience security staffing shortages⁵, thus requiring services.

The stats are impressive and empowering VARs and MSPs to capitalize on this opportunity has been a top strategic goal for Comcast Business and Masergy. In keeping with that objective, the Masergy Guardian Portfolio provides 24/7 managed firewall, SD-WAN, and security services that are available in tandem with a VAR or MSP’s existing offerings. These offerings are tailored to fit the needs of small and medium-sized businesses.

An Increased Sense of Urgency

Hardware and software margins continue to decline, putting partners under even more pressure to offer a richer set of services. Compounded by the rise in demand for OpEx and consumption-based technologies, an even more urgent need to offer these types of solutions has emerged.

The shift to remote/hybrid work accelerated the need to modernize network infrastructure and fueled a surge in demand for network security. Dell’Oro Group now predicts a double-digit compounded annual growth rate (CAGR) in revenues in this sector by 2027⁶.

Dell’Oro Group also expects that there is more outsourcing of network security due to the realization that legacy networks and security architectures are inadequate, especially in newer distributed, interactive, and mobile environments. As a result, businesses are considering managed services that offer a more efficient and cost-effective path, tapping into the latest technologies without a major internal IT overhaul.

Planning for the Future

According to the Fortinet 2022 State of Operational Technology and Cybersecurity Report, 93% of organizations experienced one or more intrusion targeting their operational technology infrastructure in the past 12 months, with 78% experiencing more than three⁷. This trend has led to vendors accelerating their development of solutions to deliver a portfolio encompassing capabilities directed at more proactive and preemptive security protection. With only 6% of organizations represented in the study reporting zero intrusions, the findings showed that this top-tier group adopted best practices like reduced complexity, transparency, and proactive monitoring and reporting.

For medium-sized businesses, the Masergy Guardian Portfolio offers a response to just this type of security planning requirement and framework, and at a managed cost.

A Sales Route for Growth

The Masergy Guardian Portfolio was launched to give VARs and MSPs a managed solution available through their existing distribution sales route. These tailored solutions make it easier for partners to sell, deploy, and support IT services of all types, and help them expand their service portfolio without the upfront investment. Combining Fortinet FortiGate with managed network and security services from Comcast Business streamlines 24/7 NOC and SOC management for partners while offering the potential for recurring monthly revenue.

Watch the video.

Around the Clock: NOC & SOC

Around-the-clock security staffing can come at a prohibitive cost for VARs and MSPs. Comcast Business’ 24/7 NOC and SOC teams offer additional value.

Clients can customize their SD-WAN solutions with add-ons for secure remote work connectivity and security threat monitoring and response services.

Expanded Services to Help Promote Loyalty

Partners’ client relationships was a critical consideration in designing the portfolio’s service-focused solution. The co-managed option allows partners to preserve their relationships as they gain more revenue potential.

Sales Made Simple

Another intentional part of the design was to make selling simplified for partners. There are no complex technical certifications required to sell, and zero-touch implementation capabilities and Comcast Business support make the solution easy to install.

Menu Style Customization

The bonus is that VARs and MSPs select from two service options: fully managed SD-WAN services (provided entirely by Comcast Business) and co-managed services (where the VAR/MSP takes on the Tier 1 and 2 client support). This service flexibility is key, giving partners the freedom to choose their preferred service model in a way that complements their existing business structure.

Partners, Co-Creation and Innovation

Driving multi-vendor managed services through the distribution channel was innovative at launch in 2022 and this newest 3-way partnership continues to blaze new trails.

This new sales route paves the way for more go-to-market VARs and MSPs and international channel partners. New conversations and co-development abound, so stay tuned as we continue to innovate and work to create even more shared success and offerings.

Learn more about the Masergy Guardian Portfolio

Resources

¹ Precedence Research: Managed Service Market Global Forecast 2022-2030. 2022.

² Frost & Sullivan Report: Technology Companies Realize Transformative Benefits From Advanced SD-WAN With Integrated Security by Gina Sanchez, Industry Principal, Global Network Services. 2022.

³ Nemertes MSSP Buyer’s Guide: What to Look for in a Modern Managed Security services Provider, by John Burke. November 2021.

2020 IDG SD-WAN Market Trends Report: ‘New Normal’ Puts SD-WAN Digital Transformation in the Fast Lane, by staff writers at IDG. 2020.

⁵ 2023 SASE Trends Report by CIO and Comcast Business. 2023.

Channel Insider: Network Security & SASE Continue to Attract MSP Attention by Drew Robb. March 2023.

Fortinet Report: 2022 State of Operational Technology and Cybersecurity.

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