Barracuda to Buy Intronis, Boost MSP Commitment

Craig Galbraith**Editor’s Note: Please click here for a recap of the biggest channel-impacting mergers in July-August 2015.**

Barracuda Networks, which provides security, application delivery and data-protection services, has struck a deal to buy Intronis, which offers data-protection services to SMBs through managed service providers (MSPs).

The merger, which is expected to close in Barracuda’s fiscal third quarter, improves the company’s stance in the channel greatly, giving it nearly 2,000 MSPs and a platform designed to streamline how those MSPs meet customers’ data-protection needs.

“Barracuda and Intronis share a commitment to simplicity, customer experience, and the channel,” said BJ Jenkins, CEO and president of Barracuda. “We believe a larger opportunity exists to add Barracuda’s … security and data-protection solutions to the Intronis platform to expand its offerings. This will allow Intronis’ MSP partners to address the broader needs of their customers.”

Why does this deal make sense? Obviously, the companies have some similar offerings. Beyond that, the number of customers looking to MSPs to procure, deploy and manage IT is growing quickly, as CompTIA’s 4th Annual Managed Services Trends Survey notes. Also, more traditional VARs are taking up managed services. Barracuda says adding Intronis will better position the company to offer simplified pricing, delivery and a support platform that makes it easier for MSPs to manage their customers’ network, security and data protection needs.

“We are excited to embark on the next phase in our journey, and we will stay true to our mission of helping channel partners be as successful as possible by ensuring no business fails due to data loss,” wrote Intronis CEO Rick Faulk, in a blog. “We are proud of all we’ve accomplished and look forward to what the future holds for both us, and our channel partners as part of Barracuda’s dedicated MSP business.”

“We’ve invested heavily in developing and maintaining strong relationships with our MSP channel, which is reinforced by our platform designed to simplify how our partners manage their offerings,” he added, in a prepared statement.

That platform is ECHOplatform, which many of the company’s MSPs use as the foundation of their businesses. VARs also have used it to speed up their transition to managed services. It’s closely integrated with the major professional-services automation (PSA) and remote monitoring and management (RMM) providers, Intronis said. It features …

… comprehensive reporting, centralized account management and consolidated billing.

Intronis has more than 36,000 customers. Look for a channel update from the combined companies in the near future.

“Out the gate, it’s business as usual for Intronis and Barracuda channel partners,” Neal Bradbury, co-founder and vice president of channel development, Intronis, told Channel Partners. “Once the deal closes in October, we will have a number of  ‘coming soon’ enhancements to our technology portfolios and our programs. There are a lot of synergies to be gained and best practices to share between the two companies. And the fact there is minimal overlap in our partner bases is great news for all of us – including our channel partners and alliances.”

At least one partner who works with both Intronis and Barracuda Networks expects this combination to be worthwhile.

“Intronis’ focus on simplifying how I deliver solutions ensures that I am efficiently providing high quality services to my customers, and Barracuda’s comprehensive, easy-to-use portfolio allows me to address a broad set of customer challenges, efficiently and cost-effectively,” said Eric Janson, president of Parallel Edge. “I believe this combination will further help partners like us create new opportunities to serve the IT needs of our customers even more effectively as we expand our business.”

The purchase price of the deal was not revealed. Barracuda’s stock fell sharply (21 percent) in after-hours trading after the deal was announced Tuesday, but that was more likely tied to a report that it missed sales expectations.

Follow senior online managing editor Craig Galbraith on Twitter.

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