PFU’s iNetSec Smart Finder
By Mark Cox
Security vendor PFU Systems, a Fujitsu company, is making its entrée into the Canadian market through a distribution relationship with Vancouver-based Foreseeson IT Distribution. The focus will be on bringing PFU’s iNetSec Smart Finder, which combines endpoint visibility and network access with an intrusion prevention system, to the Canadian channel.
While not well known in North America, PFU is one of the largest Fujitsu subsidiaries, a $1.2 billion dollar company that is 20 years old, and was originally a partnership between Panasonic, Fujitsu and a third Japanese company. Much of their business has been building products for Fujitsu – one reason they are not well known here under their own brand.
“We have different go-to-market strategies for different markets,” said Miguel Llerena, Director of Technology Alliances & Channels at PFU Systems. “In Japan, where iNetSec has 40 per cent of the market, we sell through a mix of channel and direct sales, with Fujitsu being a big channel by itself. However, in the Americas we sell through the channel, and through alliances.”
While PFU has been selling in the U.S. for a long time, the iNetSec Smart Finder is fairly new over here. The product was originally launched in Japan in 2004, and is now in its third generation, but it only became available in North America in 2013.
“iNetSec Smart Finder has differentiation and is unique with its benefits and capabilities,” said Carmine Clementelli, Sales and Marketing Manager at PFU. “It provides endpoint visibility, discovering all devices on the network, and controls who can be on it. It reduces bandwidth usage. Third and most important, it is also able to scan the internal network and look for Advanced Persistent Threats. It means you don’t have to have separate a la carte solutions.
“It’s also installed internally, not at the perimeter, with an agentless solution, so it’s non-intrusive,” Clementelli continued. “It’s an out of band appliance, so it installs in less than two hours with no downtime. It’s also very easy to use. All this means that it covers the entire market from the SMB to the enterprise.”
Foreseeson, which will exclusively distribute the iNetSec Smart Finder, began life in 2001 as a contract manufacturer, making firewalls for Fortinet.
“Fortinet eventually moved all their manufacturing business to China, but they retained us as their first Canadian distributor, and we have been doing distribution for 11 years and now have 300 channel partners across the country,” said Mike Ferguson, Product Manager, Foreseeson Technology. Foreseeson’s offices are in Vancouver and they are especially strong in western Canada, but they do business in all ten provinces and have a sales office in Quebec City.
Foreseeson’s channel partners run the gamut from VARs doing close to 60 million a year down to small mom and pops handling security.
“We have kept it small because you have a personal relationship with the customers, Ferguson said. “We pick best of breed and advise our channel on those products. Compared to other distributors, we carry a very small number of lines.”
Ferguson said that PFU fit into their philosophy.
“We were looking for a product line that complements what we carry now,” he said. “We don’t carry competitor products per se – they are all complementary.”
Llerena said that Foreseeson is also a good fit for them, especially considering PFU has no established market in Canada.
“They have a very solid track record of security vendors, including vendors we are looking at partnering with,” he said. “My preference is also to work with boutique distributors, because we are not a massive box moving product. In addition, our strategy to grow the Canadian market will be to start west and go east.”
“The iNetSec Smart Finder, being internal network security, complements Foreseeson’s Fortinet firewall well,” Clementelli said.
“We are trying to recruit good quality SIs and resellers, especially in the security space,” Llerena added. “We are presently evaluating some resellers. We are looking for ones who will lead with our product.”