Richard talks to Rob Rae about the recent merger between Datto and Autotask.
An Interview with Rob Rae
AutoTask provide professional service automation, with more than 9,000 customers worldwide relying on them to help them run their Managed Service Provider (MSP) businesses.
They offer end to end IT software, including CRM (customer relationship management), a ticketing system, customer support and detailed reporting. Their aim is to help IT companies to be more efficient, streamlined and profitable to ultimately scale and grow.
Datto focus on data recovery and data protection, helping MSPs to get their clients back up and running quickly when things go wrong. They offer ransomware protection, which is ideal for smaller businesses with only limited in-house IT support.
They also provide integrated networks to make remote fixes easier, as well as cloud support for data, regardless of where it’s held, and business backup and disaster recovery, both for the MSPs and their clients.
What Rob Hopes Will Come from the Merger
Vista Equity Partners owned AutoTask, and after they recently bought Datto, decided it made sense to merge the two companies to provide an even more comprehensive support service to both lots of customers.
The new company now has 1,400 employees worldwide, with 35 offices and 45 petabytes of cloud data, making it the largest MSP-only company in the industry. The technologies offered by the two companies are complementary and Rob believes this will benefit MSPs by giving a single pane of glass and one bill, to make life easier, save time and help with profitability.
He said that putting the two companies together “allows us to become creative and innovative with the MSP in mind and do very cohesive and streamlined things.” Key to this is the open ecosystem, so users who don’t want to use Datto can continue to use their existing backup or continuity solution.
The MSPs are not forced to adopt an ‘all-in-one solution’, but Rob hopes that they will offer competitive prices, outstanding products and an MSP-centric company that is the best solution.
How Open Mesh can Help MSPs
Datto decided to focus on networking, because despite the thousands of products available, none are MSP-centric or a viable solution for the channel. This led to them buying Open Mesh a small company with what Rob describes as having “phenomenal technology and affordable access points and switches.”
Datto liked the fact that they were forward-thinking and cloud-based, making them an innovative company. They added a router to Open Mesh’s product range to close the gaps that MSPs have.
Connectivity is a big problem, so if an MSP loses the internet connection to a site, they have to go out and fix the problem, which has a time and money cost to the business. Rather than losing productivity, Datto’s DNA device fills over to 4G to provide that connectivity to allow for troubleshooting and remote fixes.
Why Rob Thinks Security is Important for MSPs
With the introduction of the cloud a few years ago businesses considered migrating from being an MSP to a cloud solutions provider (CSP), although ultimately only a few made this move, with most MSPs simply adding cloud services to their offering.
Security is really important for customers but they struggle with the complexity around it, offering an opportunity to the MSPs. Rob says it’s important that the end user sees their provider staying ahead of the potential problems that could impact their IT systems.
Mentioned in this Podcast
- Autotask www.autotask.com
- Datto https://www.datto.com/
- Vista Equity Partners: www.vistaequitypartners.com
- Open Mesh: www.openmesh.com
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