MSPs Lower Costs and Increase Profit with MSP Expo Silver Sponsor Netgate's Firewalls

MSPs Lower Costs and Increase Profit with MSP Expo Silver Sponsor Netgate's Firewalls

By Greg Tavarez

Clients demand more services from managed service providers to meet their often-changing needs. These demands include robust cybersecurity measures to protect against sophisticated cyber threats and scalable cloud solutions to optimize flexibility and efficiency.

That said, clients also constantly seek the best bang for their buck. Clients expect MSPs to optimize their services and pass on cost savings. Offering more value at a lower price not only attracts new clients but also helps retain existing ones, fostering long-term relationships built on trust and satisfaction.

Netgate, a provider of open-source security solutions, contributes to addressing the demands of MSPs and their clients by offering cybersecurity solutions tailored to their specific needs, including helping MSPs offer services at a lower cost.

We had a chance to speak to Glen Shok, Vice President, Marketing, Netgate, where he talks about trends in the MSP space, what products and services they offer MSPs, and what the Netgate team will bring to MSP Expo 2024, part of the #TECHSUPERSHOW, taking place February 13-15 in Fort Lauderdale, Florida. Netgate is a Silver sponsor and will be in booth #158 in the exhibit hall.

Here is what Shok had to say:

What recent innovations in your products or services are particularly relevant for MSPs?

Netgate will be releasing several features in pfSense Plus and TNSR, the first and foremost being Multi-Instance Management. For MSPs and MSSPs, which are managing many pfSense Plus firewalls, they can now be managed in a single pane of glass. By mid-year, we also expect to release our Enterprise ZTNA offering, which will add Mesh VPN capability to both TNSR and pfSense Plus. Lastly, be on the lookout for the Netgate 4200 firewall, made for Consumers and SMBs to support 10 and 25 Gbps interfaces. The 6100 Firewall supports 10G Fiber and Copper today.

Describe your company's role in the MSP ecosystem and how your company supports MSPs?

Netgate is the maker of pfSense Plus and TNSR software. This software runs on our appliances, as well as Bare Metal and Cloud. Netgate is trusted by many MSPs, MSSPs, and ISPs worldwide to support their efforts in securing their customers.

Glen Shok
Vice President, Marketing, Netgate

What are the top 2-3 trends you see in the MSP space, and why are they important to MSPs?

The top trend in 2024 is providing more value at a lower price. Netgate’s pfSense Plus software has over 1 million active implementations. A firewall is relied upon to secure home users, many U.S. and global Defense Departments, and everyone in between. By providing your customers with Netgate Firewalls on-premises and in the cloud, the MSP/MSSP can lower their costs while increasing profit by not paying recurring software/maintenance costs, unlike those imposed by our competition.

How are these trends impacting your business?

Netgate is the leader in price/performance within the firewall and VPN concentrator space. Our business on-premises and in the cloud has been growing at a substantial pace as more and more customers find their way to pfSense Plus and TNSR.

How do your services/products integrate into the MSP landscape, creating symbiotic relationships rather than a mere vendor-client dynamic?

pfSense Plus and TNSR fit right into a managed services framework. Simple management via CLI, GUI or API (TNSR) is available. In March 2024, a single pane of glass management platform will become available. This helps our MSP/MSSP partners increase gross profit and simplifies their day-to-day management.

What emerging technologies (e.g., IoT, 5G, AI, generative AI, etc.) should MSPs be considering and incorporating into their service offerings to help their clients stay ahead in their respective industries?

ZTNA is coming. While many vendors offer a “Zero Trust Architecture” option, it usually relies on the “shift left” mantra. Making the software developer a security/authentication expert. Mesh VPN will enable end-to-end encryption, ransomware segregation, impossible Data Exfil, and simple deployment. While the applications still need to authenticate, they don’t need to terminate VPNs, change protocols, support new programming languages, etc. Let the legacy protocols make their way through the network, just like they are used to…but point-to-point, encrypted, authenticated, and secure.

The technology landscape and business needs are constantly evolving. How does your company's strategy actively encourage MSPs to embrace change and turn it into a strategic advantage?

Keeping up with change is always the job of the technologist. Embracing the migration to ZTNA will help your customers secure their data, limit the potential of data exfil, and save your customers money. The first movers to this technology will have an unfair advantage.

What key challenges do MSPs commonly face and how are you helping solve them?

Competition. All your MSP buddies are competing with you, not on services or features, but on price. Customers are tightening their belts. Provide a service that is comparable with Palo Alto and Fortinet’s but at a fraction of the price and with no recurring maintenance costs. Lower your prices and improve your GP.

What sets your solution apart from competitors in the market?

Price/performance. Lowest TCO firewall and VPN concentrator are available.

Please share a success story or two about how your strategies helped MSPs navigate the growth minefield, turning challenges into opportunities.

As ISPs and customers are moving to 10Gbps and even 25Gbps fiber drops, companies like Atlantic Broadband/Breezeline use Netgate Firewalls to secure their business and consumer customers. The Netgate 6100 supports 10GBase-T and 10GBase-SX interfaces natively. It has the performance to support simultaneous Router/VPN/Firewall feature set. All for a list price starting at $799. And no yearly recurring costs.

How do you see the MSP industry evolving in the next several years, and how is your company preparing for these changes?

MSPs need to offer more services to keep pace. Netgate is helping them by improving our management capability to simplify the way they engage with their customers. A single pane of glass management console will lower the time to respond should an outage occur. MSPs are also beginning to offer more managed cloud services. Utilizing pfSense Plus in the cloud will help their customers lower extraneous fees from NAT Gateway, VPN, DNS, and native firewalls. All using the same technology that’s used on-premises.

What technological changes/evolution do you expect to see in the coming year and how will those changes impact your business and/or the MSP market?

In the security world, the biggest one is zero trust coming to fruition. And Netgate is bringing forth the best solution with the least impact on existing infrastructure.

What are you most looking forward to at MSP Expo 2024?

Meeting new MSPs.

What is your session and why is it a must-attend at MSP Expo 2024?

One session title is “Today’s Reality: Protecting Businesses from Hackers, Ransomware, and Insider Threats,” taking place from 2-245 p.m. Thursday, February 15. The other session title is “Cybersecurity Solutions Session - Netgate: The Road to ZTNA,” CSS-06, taking place at 6 p.m. Wednesday, February 14.

Why are you participating at MSP Expo 2024, and what are you highlighting at your booth?

Netgate pfSense Plus: Affordable 10Gbps firewall/router/VPN. Netgate TNSR: High performance router and VPN for MSPs and cloud.

Edited by Greg Tavarez
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