Channel Insider content and product recommendations are editorially independent. We may make money when you click on links to our partners. Learn More.

Melbourne-based Mantel Group has announced the appointment of Nick Ellsmore to lead its cyber security capability, with the ambition of rapidly accelerating its capabilities in this area.

Ellsmore is returning to cyber security after an eight-month career break. Prior to that, he was the SVP of Worldwide Consulting & Professional Services at Trustwave.

In his new role, he will be looking to expand Mantel Group’s security specialist team from 40 to over 150 over the next two years.

“I was catching up with an investor colleague, who mentioned that a business they had a stake in – Mantel Group – was looking to accelerate their growth in cyber, and they introduced me to the CEO and Partner Group,” Ellsmore told Channel Insider. “We spent some time together and it really felt like a good fit. Mantel Group has both an appetite and capability for fast growth, and that’s how I like to operate.”

New priorities for Mantel Group

Mantel Group isn’t the only partner in the Australian channel to pivot to heavily prioritise the security practice this year. As Ellsmore said, the other three business areas for Mantel – Cloud, Data, and Digital – are all strengthened by having a strong security practice, and clients are looking to scale their own efforts in cyber security.

“Data security is a ubiquitous issue: driven by data breaches, new regulations, and big data strategies that didn’t account for the potential cost of the data being kept,” he said.

“Cloud security is a ubiquitous issue: the vast majority of workloads are now cloud-based, and it is still the case that organisations find it hard to get comfort about the protection and continuous monitoring of those environments. Digital security connects all these threads, with identity, data and cloud all coming together into services delivered to customers.

“When you cut through all the buzzwords around GenAI, and Zero Trust, and post-quantum encryption, you realise that the real energy and investment is going into making sure long-standing controls are deployed consistently, effectively, and are being monitored. Mantel Group is uniquely positioned to help our clients with cyber security across all these domains.”

The challenge of finding the right people

The challenge that Mantel Group will face with its ambitious efforts to scale the business is the cyber security shortage, which is making talent acquisition incredibly hard. Earlier this year, data from Talent suggested that the channel was in an ideal position to attract talent; however, there is still a lot of competition for a shortage of people.

Ellsmore is confident that his new organisation will be able to successfully navigate this challenge through the strength of its culture.

“In the same way that I joined because of the opportunity, the culture and the team, I believe others will too,” he said. “Mantel Group has been recognised as a Best Workplace in Australia for Women, in Technology and as #1 Best Workplace in Australia for the past two years.”

As Ellsmore said, there is a lack of resources and skills across customers to address these gaps, and so the channel needs to support customers in this area. He added that many security professionals and MSSPs have a “narrow field of vision,” and one of the reasons he was attracted to Mantel Group was the additional strategic support a company with its broad vision could provide. “Through better strategy and design in the first place, we can help avoid some security challenges altogether,” he stated.

Featured Partners: Managed Service Provider (MSP) Software