Open source-focused ITIM provider Centreon launches out-of-the-box version for MSPs

Centreon, which just expanded into North America from France in 2018, has had MSP partners as well as VARs, but this is their first complete MSP package with a pay-as-you-grow pricing model.

Romain Le Merlus, Centreon Co-Founder and CEO for North America

Centreon, a Paris-based IT infrastructure monitoring [ITIM] provider whose North American headquarters are in Toronto, has introduced Centreon MSP Edition. The new offering is an MSP Edition of Centreon’s IT monitoring platform presented as a complete commercial package based on a pay-as-you-grow pricing model.

Centreon was formed 15 years ago in France by two co-founders, Julien Mathis and Romain LeMerlus, with the company’s differentiation in the IT monitoring business  being that their offering is based on open source. Their flagship product has been Centreon Business, a modular, all-in-one Enterprise Monitoring Suite. In 2018, LeMerlus came to North America to run the North American operations from offices in Toronto, while Mathis remained in Europe to run the company there.

Le Merlus said that Centreon’s market in North America is similar to Europe, where they are strong in the SMB, although they do have larger customers as well. That makes stronger support for MSPs essential for Centreon to meet their expansion goals.

“MSPs have become very strong in this market, because they have to support this cloud to the edge, which is everywhere,” Le Merlus stated.

When Centreon began its business in Europe, they initially sold direct, adding a channel five years later. When they moved into North America, the plan was to go entirely through channel partners in this market right from the start, and not sell direct at all.

“Our channel is a mix of MSPs and VARs, and we have about a dozen now between the US and Canada,” Le Merlus said. “Our strategy has not changed. We developed our approach based on open source, and created a commercial open source solution that now has nice penetration in the open source market.

“We know there are a lot of players today, but open source IT monitoring has value and we have built a solid community with a solid number of installations worldwide,” Le Merlus added. “We see the future as a mix of cloud, on-prem and hybrid, and see a spot for open source IT monitoring inside the organization, and that is where we belong. We think we can have a spot inside every organization, with open source on one side and cloud services on the other.”

Le Merlus stated that this is the right time for the company to expand the strength of their MSPs with the new Centreon MSP Edition.

“It’s the right time because of the transformation of digital journey for SMBs,” he said. “More organizations are using edge technology, but it can be hard for them to set up and maintain and they ask MSPs to do that. Our architecture is very well attuned to help MSPs do that.

While Centreon had MSPs before, they did not have a packaged offering with full features for them.

“Previously it was not fully packaged out of the box,” Le Merlus said. “Before they bought a license to get the solution, but we didn’t have pay as you grow pricing. Now, because this is being sold as a commercial product, it has specific form and features for MSP. It’s packaged in a way that’s useful for MSP day to day use that does everything out of the box, instead of us having to do these things for each of them. And what’s new is its ability to now support the full breadth of technology from the cloud to the edge.”

The proactive monitoring features in Centreon MSP Edition, which include things like a Morning Check with a simple dashboard sent out to customers automatically every morning to indicate operations are running smoothly, are not new. Le Merlus said, however, that their value will be expanded for MSPs in this edition.

“We are not inventing brand new stuff, but Morning Check, which provides a holistic view because of our open source base, is important,” he said. “It’s why an organization like Yorktel decided to drop ScienceLogic and use us for their main tooling.” New Jersey-based Yorktel, an MSP focused around video and audio communications, just signed up as a Centreon partner.

Le Merlus said that they are always willing to talk with prospective new partners.

“We will continue to expand our channel strategy and onboard new partners, and we would love to interest more of them in Centreon,” he stated.

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