Broadcom pushes partners, customers to replace existing licenses, while competitors try to displace accounts
As of today, partners are no longer authorized to sell two popular Symantec products, Symantec Endpoint Protection Cloud and Symantec Endpoint Protection Small Business Edition. Broadcom, which acquired Symantec’s enterprise business in 2019, is shifting customers to Symantec Endpoint Security as part of a consolidation strategy.
The Lowdown: Broadcom began informing partners of the change in January when it abruptly announced the planned discontinuation of the two popular products. Broadcom asked partners to stop selling SEP Cloud and SEP SBE immediately but allowed new license sales to continue until today.
The Details: The plan propagated by Broadcom is to get partners to switch customers to Symantec Endpoint Security, which it says helps protect endpoints against known and emerging threats. Broadcom is providing partners with instructions for transitioning existing customer accounts to Symantec Endpoint Security. Transitioned customers also will receive free licenses for six months. Broadcom will end support for SEP Cloud and SEP SBE on Nov. 2 this year.
The Impact: Potentially millions of devices require migration to Symantec Endpoint Security or another vendor’s endpoint security application. According to Datanyze, Symantec Endpoint Protection (aggregated) holds nearly 19% market share, second only to Trend Micro, which has 21%. McAfee’s VirusScan is third with a 13.5% market share.
A wrinkle that may impact partners is that the Symantec Partner Management Console doesn’t interoperate with Symantec Enterprise Security. According to Ingram Micro, Symantec Enterprise Security does allow the configuration of multiple accounts through its console. However, there is no centralized alerting and reporting.
Partners and customers are not happy about Broadcom’s strategy. Many found the Broadcom announcement confusing and problematic. Broadcom says the end of life of SEP Cloud and SEP SBE doesn’t mean the end of endpoint protection, but rather a shift in focus to Symantec Endpoint Protection, Symantec Endpoint Security, and Symantec Endpoint Security Complete.
Background: Broadcom acquired Symantec’s enterprise business in August 2019 for $10.7 billion; the company’s small business and consumer business spun off and became Norton Lifelock. Broadcom realigned its product and go-to-market strategy to focus on subscription-based licensing of products that align with its portfolio and targeting its top 1,500 accounts. Broadcom says it’s creating an enterprise software powerhouse through the assets it acquired from Symantec, CA Technologies (2018), and Brocade (2017).
Many Symantec resellers stopped selling SEP Cloud and SEP SBE when they received the announcement in January. Broadcom allowed continued sales through today (May 4) to give partners time to learn about Symantec Endpoint Security and transition their sales strategy.
Symantec competitors have plied the market with special offers to lure away disenfranchised partners and customers. Many endpoint security vendors say they’re picking partners and accounts because of the Broadcom strategy.