Websense partners ‘in the zone’ at Partner Conference

Fiaaz Walji - WebsenseWebsense brought together nearly 100 of its top partners – including five Canadian resellers – for its annual Partner Conference in Palos Verdes, Calif., and with a theme of “in the zone,” the security vendor used the show to add new channel tools and resources and to showcase what it sees as an increasing role in the security world.

The company hosts the event at the end of a busy week, following immediately on from its worldwide sales conference at the same venue. ChannelBuzz.ca tore Fiaaz Walji, senior director of sales for Websense Canada, away from the event long enough to get caught up on what’s going down in California.

Here’s the word on the street.

Walji said the event covered a lot of ground, from the threatscape around the world to mobile and cloud security. “A lot of things have happened with Websense going from a single-product company to a true broad security player,” Walji said. “The discussion now goes from home security to the business space.”

And with that expanding role, Walji said the company is becoming more and more dependent on a strong channel. To that end, he said the company is “committed” to increasing the number of resources available to partner SEs, and helping them find their way in the new Websense world.

“It’s not just filtering, it’s now the network,” he said.

To support partners on the marketing side, the company has introduced the Demand Creator, bringing together all of its channel-facing marketing materials into a single portal, and allowing partners to co-brand collateral with their own logo. Walji said the site now allows partners to do campaigns that address Websense in general, data only, Web only, or the company’s Triton architecture.

The company also introduced an overhauled partner finder – one that aims to help customers narrow down their choices when it comes to partners and gives the company’s most-invested VARs a chance to shine.

Previously, Walji said the site offered up all of the company’s 3,000-plus channel partners. Now, the finder is geared to more prominently feature the company’s top partners, defined by Walji as those who have “competency, coverage and some level of revenue” across the company’s product lines.

The finder is launched in the U.S., but Walji said the company is still finalizing its list of Canada partners for the partner finder.

Walji hinted that the company would have “a big announcement” coming at next month’s RSA conference, and said a preview of said announcement had created quite a buzz with the assembled partners. Alas, no further details, other than Walji’s assertion that “we’ve got some good things coming down the pipe.”

Also at the show, Bell Canada was named the company’s 2011 Canadian partner of the year.