Indian-based Quick Heal Technologies, a large security software firm which entered the North American market in late April and announced a partner program in May, has now announced what it believes to be a novel loyalty offering for this part of the IT market. Its’ Quick Rewards program provides what can be unlimited benefits for referring new partners to Quick Heal – providing those partners become successful.
“This is something I came up with for North America because of the vastness of the market, and the fact that we are entering it late,” said Farokh Karani, Director, North America, Sales and Channels, at Quick Heal. “By giving partners something extra, it will both help us and help them. In doing this, it builds another layer of loyalty to us. Our management team thought it was a great idea and so we are moving forward with it.”
Here’s how it works.
Quick Rewards lets authorized channel partners receive rewards of up to six per cent of a referred partner’s first-year sales of SEQRITE, Quick Heal’s flagship product. They are also entitled to four per cent of the second year’s sales as well. The rewards are paid out as a credit which can be applied towards future purchase orders submitted to Quick Heal.
There is, in theory, no limit to the number of referrals from whom a partner can receive these benefits, with the caveat being that the partner must pan out and make sales in order to make the referring partner any money.
“It’s not a one-time referral bonus, but something that makes the referring partner invested in the success of new partners,” Karani said. “Just referring the partners and signing them up doesn’t do anything.”
While Quick Heal has thousands of partners in the Asia Pacific and EMEA regions where they have sold for years, in North America, their channel strategy has been focused on building up a small number of core partners in each region. While Quick Rewards has the potential to expand that base significantly, Karani said it is a logical extension of their partnering strategy.
“This helps us grow our channel in a peer to peer context, in which partners talk to their colleagues,” he said. “That’s normal behavior of most VARs and solution providers. There’s a cost to us for doing channel development activities. Quick Rewards lets us formalize that process of partners talking to their friends, by bringing us to them. This will take our channel development to the next level.”
Karani also added that this is very much a second stage in their channel development process because they don’t expect to see much return until next year.
“The partners who we are bringing on selectively in 2015 will be helping us with the channel development we will be doing in 2016 with this,” he said. “Quick Rewards will be rolled out at the beginning of Q3, so we don’t see it affecting things much in 2015. We do definitely see it as meaningful in 2016 though.”
Quick Heal, which is mainly focused on the SMB space, although they can scale higher than that, has entered the market with a low cost structure it developed competing in the Asian environment, which is hypercompetitive and value-oriented. That lets them offer high margins of up to 50 per cent, with which they hope to woo quality partners away from competitors. Quick Rewards represents a further bonus on top of that.
Quick Heal has also announced the addition of two regional sales managers in North America. Paul Lupo is now the Eastern Region Sales & Support Manager. He previously was a regional sales director with Bitdefender, and has also held sales and IT channel positions with AVG, NitroSecurity, Panda Security and Kaspersky.
Gus Safadi has been appointed Western Regional Sales Manager. A former channel manager with ESET, he also has worked with a number of IT security companies including Gateprotect and OpenIAM to develop their channel programs in the western U.S. and Canada.