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N-able is upping its investment in partners and accelerating
its Freemium strategy to the tune of $115 million, CEO Gavin Garbutt announced
at the remote monitoring and management vendor’s annual partner conference in
Scottsdale, Ariz. today.

Garbutt told the assembled N-able partners that the company
will use its invested
funds from private equity firm Accel-KKR
to accelerate the hybrid Freemium
program.

For partners who have 250 professional licenses of N-central
today, N-able will provide 5,000 Essentials licenses for free, for life, with
no charges for maintenance or support.

In addition, N-able will provide 500 free GPO enforcer
licenses and 500 free anti-spam licenses good until Sept. 30, 2012.

Garbutt said the value of the software to an individual
partner would be $108,500 and for all partners the value is $115 million.

“My challenge to you: 100 percent MSP growth,” Garbutt said.
“…I’m quadrupling the premium.”

Garbutt highlighted how N-able’s hybrid approach had
accelerated growth over the last year.  In the first quarter of 2010 N-able had 20,000
customers being managed by partners. Today the company has 53,000 customers
managed by partners.

The strategy is simple, Garbutt told partners. Go in and
sell them one thing. Keep it simple and intuitive. Don’t try to boil the ocean
or make them eat the entire meal of services that you have to offer.

It’s a strategy N-able established three years ago after
conducting a survey of SMB customers that showed SMBs were not interested in a
fixed-fee managed services offering. N-able recommended that partners start
with what was at top of mind for SMBs, antivirus protection. N-able could offer
this in the form of managed end-point security.

An important part of the approach is to assess the customer’s
IT infrastructure and provide some initial reports for free to help shape the
conversation about how the managed services partner can help the SMB customer
shore up its IT operations to achieve its business goals.

This year, Garbutt told Channel Insider, the focus will be
on helping partners streamline their internal processes through additional functionality.
The goal is to double the number of devices under management. N-able’s
N-central 8.2 release which is headed for beta in December and general release
in early 2012 will offer Automation Manager integration, including a GUI
process designer, agent-based processing and hundreds of objects and scripts.
It will also include Integrated third party patching.

The release will let MSPs create all their services once,
and then they can be deployed by a junior level technician.

But the feature that got the biggest reception from the
assembled MSPs at the keynote and roadmap addresses was the announcement of
mobile device management coming to N-central 8.3, set for beta in April 2012
and general release in June 2012.  MSPs
applauded the announcement enthusiastically — after they put down their iPads.
Other new capabilities will include an integrated policy manager and network
visualization.

N-central 9.0, schedule to go to beta in Oct. 2012, will
offer a cloud manager that provides public cloud management, IaaS provisioning,
a server template, and cloud application monitoring.