Nimsoft Offers to 'Save the Silverback'

By Jessica Davis  |  Print this article Print


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A day after Dell announced plans to acquire managed services platform provider SilverBack, Nimsoft is wooing the company's MSPs.

Nimsoft, a self-described service level management platform provider, is painting itself as the white knight for managed service providers distressed by Dell's acquisition of platform provider SilverBack Technologies.

The company, based in Redwood City, Calif., is offering to save SilverBack MSPs by offering them the same level of managed services at the same price they received from SilverBack—and the company will do the entire conversion for free.

"In real life, the SilverBack is actually a male gorilla, which is an endangered species," said Gary Read, CEO of Nimsoft. "We think the SilverBack MSP is about to become an endangered species as well, so we are launching a Save the SilverBack MSP program."

Read is offering Nimsoft's own staff to do any conversion work for MSPs and their customers from SilverBack to Nimsoft. Typically that will include a trip out to any MSP that takes the company up on its offer.

To read more about Dell's entrance into the managed services business, click here.

Once the conversion occurs and customers are up and running—for the same price as they paid to SilverBack—they will always have the option of upgrading to a higher level of service from Nimsoft.

"SilverBack offers up-down type monitoring," Read said. "That is truly a commodity. The higher value is monitoring of applications and services that make up those applications. No one cares whether the server is up or down. They care what effect that has on their business application."

Read said the offer will run through the end of the year. At that point, Nimsoft will evaluate whether or not to renew it.

"SilverBack MSPs are waking up to the news of the Dell acquisition today and they will be getting together in the next few weeks and months to decide where to take their businesses," Read said. "The people who want to offer higher value services will probably decide that by the end of the year."

Nimsoft can offer those MSPs comparable services to what they are receiving today at the same price, and then "they can use the additional functionality available from Nimsoft to sell higher value services to customers and protect their businesses from commoditization."

And while Read would not guarantee that his company was immune to being acquired, he said Nimsoft was more likely to purchase other companies than be acquired itself.

The privately-held company expects $21 million in revenues this year and is growing at a 60 percent to 70 percent rate. It is profitable and has about 450 customers, most of them enterprise customers. About 150 of its customers are MSPs.

Read would not comment on whether he'd also been approached by Dell as an acquisition target.

"On the surface the SilverBack acquisition makes a lot of sense for Dell," Read said. "The interesting thing is going to be how Dell manages to scale this business. They can either sign up thousands if not tens of thousands of channel partners. Or they can take this through their direct model."

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Jessica Davis covers the channel for eWeek and Channel Insider. Her technology journalism career began well before anyone heard of the World Wide Web and has included stints at Infoworld, Electronic News/EDN, and the Philadelphia Business Journal. Her work has also appeared on CNN and Forbes.com. She has covered hardware, software and networking, as well as the business side of technology. She has won several journalism awards, including a national ASBPE award for best staff-written column, and was named Marketing Computers hardest working tech journalist on their inaugural list of top tech journalists. Jessica can be reached at jessica.davis@ziffdavisenterprise.com

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