ORLANDO — Cylance has announced a new integration of their flagship CylancePROTECT and CylanceOPTICS products with the ConnectWise Automate platform. While Cylance has extensive integrations with SIEM vendors, this is their first partnership in the RMM [Remote Monitoring and Management] space. Brian Stoner, Senior Director, Global Alliances at Cylance, talked with ChannelBuzz at the ConnectWise IT Nation Connect event here about the integration, and the broader context of Cylance’s MSP strategy.
“I used to run the MSSP program at McAfee, and I knew Stu [McClure, Cylance’s founder and CEO] from there,” Stoner said. “Cylance came out with an MSP program six months before I joined two years ago, but they didn’t really have anyone who knew that market well. Didi Dayton [Cylance’s VP of worldwide channels and alliances] reached out to me. I had worked for her at Fireeye. They wanted someone who knew how to build out this kind of program.”
Stoner said that me met with CEO McClure after he had started, and McClure asked him how big the MSP business could be.
“I said that if it was done right, it could be bigger than our direct sales revenue, which is the answer he wanted to hear,” Stoner said. “There were some things we needed to get into the MSP program though, so we could scale.”
The first was a multi-tenant console.
“It took six months to get a beta version built,” Stoner said. “In addition, we were collecting spreadsheets on a monthly basis from partners so we could bill them! We had to automate the billing process, and that was the second project, a billing automation process called Zora.”
This is Cyclance’s third IT Nation event, and they began talking about working with ConnectWise two years ago.
“It took a year for us to get the distribution done, and they became a distributor of us in March of this year,” Stoner said. “The completion of the automated plug-in to our console was last month. We can now deploy products with Automate and an MSP can do anything in the Automate tab that they can do in our multi-tenant console.”
Cylance works with most of the major SIEM vendors, but this their first RMM integration.
“We went with the biggest one first,” he said. “We are also talking to Autotask/Datto. Kaseya is less of a priority because they seem focused more on their own tools than their ecosystem, so it’s hard for partners to differentiate themselves against other partners.”
Over the past two years, Cylance has gone from 20 to 230 MSP partners worldwide, and from $100,000 to $3 million in Monthly Recurring Revenue.
“It has been almost doubling quarter by quarter since I’ve been here,” Stoner said. “It’s now about a quarter of the revenue on an annual basis, and that’s growing. The partners run the gamut to the small to the very large. I also manage all the global partners that cut across regions. We rolled out a partnership with Verizon at RSA, and now have 277 projects on the go.
Cylance has onboarded 29 new MSP partners since March, 13 of those coming in the last month.
“We expect to see Automate enhance that,” Stoner said. “We have 80 partners in the pipeline now with ConnectWise, and that was before this show.”
Stoner said that at their third IT Nation, Cylance is having different kinds of conversations with attendees.
“Our first two shows we were establishing ourselves,” he said. “Now we are explaining to MSPs how they can get engaged and get started. The word of mouth is not that we are a cool product – it’s about what we can do to save them time. MSPs see a significant drop in malware ticket at their help desk because we don’t allow things to detonate, so there’s less to clean up. There’s a significant drop in reimaging.
“So far, we’ve been very effective against ransomware,” Stoner added. Handling ransomware is a lot more than just having backups. You have to be able to block it – which is very hard with signature-based systems. Some competitors use machine learning simply to write more signatures.”