Leading British VAR Succeeds with Managed Service Offering

AWS and Barracuda Ensure Reliability, Security for Altinet’s MSP Customers

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Summary

Altinet, based in Leeds, England, is a value-added reseller (VAR) and managed service provider (MSP) offering customized IT security and storage solutions to a growing list of customers. Founded in 2013, the business originally focused on reselling Barracuda web security, email security, and backup products.

By mid-2015, founding partners Daniel Bailey and Henry Doyle were having particular success in the education market. As they got to know that market better, they realized that education customers were challenged by traditional pricing models that required significant capital expenses for three- or five-year software licenses. In addition, as the scope and severity of IT threats increased, these customers’ IT teams simply lacked the expertise to set up and maintain comprehensive security solutions.

"Barracuda NextGen Firewall makes it easy to extend robust security to our customers without high up-front licensing fees. "
- Dan Bailey, Co-Founder, Altinet

In response to these insights, Altinet set out to develop a managed-service offering. This would replace high up-front costs with more manageable ongoing subscription fees, while also closing the expertise gap by letting Altinet’s staff manage the solution on a day-to-day basis.

Profile

  • Based in Leeds, England
  • Founded in 2013
  • 2016 Barracuda UK Partner of the Year
  • 23 employees

Challenges

  • VAR offerings required too much CapEx for price-sensitive customers in education and other public-sector verticals.

Solution

  • Developed managed-service offering hosted on AWS and protected by Barracuda NextGen Firewall.

Results

  • Transition to MSP model drove 170% revenue growth in 2016.

Choosing the Platform

Bailey and Doyle considered a wide variety of hosting options for their new service, including both public-cloud platforms and more traditional approaches, such as placing a physical server in a datacenter, or using a virtual appliance in a third-party datacenter.

After weighing the benefits, Altinet selected Amazon Web Services (AWS) to host their managed service offering. Their primary consideration in choosing AWS was the importance of uninterrupted availability. As Bailey puts it, “In the end we felt that if AWS was reliable enough for Netflix and other high-availability service providers, then it would be a good place for us to launch from.”

"We felt that if AWS was reliable enough for Netflix, then it would be a good place for us to launch from."
- Dan Bailey, Co-Founder, Altinet

Another advantage of using AWS was that Altinet could place a Barracuda NextGen Firewall at the edge of their AWS infrastructure, and thereby extend advanced firewall protections to all their managed-service customers—without each customer having to buy a separate license. “We had customers who wanted to migrate to a public-cloud platform, and we could help them do that, but often they just wanted to use an email security gateway for security,” says Bailey. “Adding a Barracuda NextGen Firewall license could double their total cost, which made it harder to get projects approved. But now it’s built into the subscription cost, so it’s much easier.”

Barracuda’s Role

Altinet works with a variety of partners, but Barracuda represents seventy percent of their sales. One reason that Bailey and his team continue to favor Barracuda products is the company’s dedication to supporting cloud deployments.

As Bailey puts it, “Cloud-based managed services clearly have a huge potential, they’re exactly what our customers are looking for right now. And Barracuda have shown that they are strongly committed to supporting service providers like Altinet over the long term. As long as that continues, Barracuda will be a central element of our business strategy, and a key component of the services we offer.”

Onward and Upward

Since launching Altinet’s managed-service offering, Bailey and Doyle haven’t looked back. Following 2016’s 170% leap in revenue, the partners are aiming to book £4m – £5m in 2017, and to increase staffing from 23 to 60 by 2019. Bailey says, “Our ability to deliver IT expertise cost-effectively and solve customer problems, combined with the reliability and security that AWS and Barracuda provide, have been major factors in our success so far, and we fully expect that to continue going forward.”

About Barracuda

Barracuda (NYSE: CUDA) simplifies IT with cloud-enabled solutions that empower customers to protect their networks, applications, and data, regardless of where they reside. These powerful, easy-to-use and affordable solutions are trusted by more than 150,000 organizations worldwide and are delivered in appliance, virtual appliance, cloud and hybrid deployments. Barracuda’s customer-centric business model focuses on delivering high-value, subscription-based IT solutions that provide end-to-end network and data security. For additional information, please visit barracuda.com.

About Barracuda Security Solutions in AWS Marketplace

Barracuda security solutions are engineered for AWS and allow you to fully leverage the power of the cloud. Barracuda is an APN Technology Partner and has achieved Security Competency certification, which means solutions are well designed and pre-qualified by AWS. As part of the shared security responsibility model, Barracuda products complement existing AWS services by providing a comprehensive security architecture, as well as a more seamless experience across your cloud and on-premises environments—all while providing enhanced security against cyberattacks and advanced threats.