In my last blog message I suggested that Managed Service Providers (MSPs) should consider physical infrastructure services as a lucrative option for driving business growth, especially given that the boost in data and connected devices is causing service demands to surge.
I know you’ve heard the term “big data” before but lets take a minute to consider the numbers that accompany some of the services we use on an almost daily basis. Google currently translates 69.5m words per minute! In that same time 900 videos are being shared on YouTube! In the US, some advanced medical treatments which require collaboration between doctors on disparate sites, generate 1Tbyte of data per year for each patient.
All this data has to be stored and managed to the highest standards of security and confidentiality. And this is before we even mention the Internet of Things. Truly data is the new oil.
For many such applications, the issues of latency and security will require the provision of data centres at the Edge. This provides huge opportunities for MSPs, especially if they are forward thinking enough to add these services to their portfolios.
A managed services provider that covers the basic servers, networks and storage is a familiar offering today.
At several events recently attended I’ve asked my audience to raise their hands if they’ve ever sold or currently sell UPS solutions. If I’m lucky, maybe a third of you will have.
I’ve also asked how many of them manage a UPS remotely for their customers. Typically, half of the hands drop.
When I ask how many have incorporated managing a UPS into their managed service platform half of the remaining hands drop, and that’s on a good day. Sometimes a solitary hand remains aloft.
What an untapped opportunity this represents for the managed service industry!
Here’s some more numbers. Let’s say you sell a UPS for £1800. Then say you charge a customer £15 a month to manage it for them. After five years, you will have made three and a half times the typical profit margin on the sale of that unit. It’s no longer a sale; it’s an asset.
Why, you might ask, should the customer consider such a service? Isn’t the point of a UPS to sit quietly and intervene only when needed? Surely they should let a sleeping UPS lie…
Well yes. As long as it is guaranteed to wake up the second there’s a power outage.
But batteries have a replacement lifecycle and components will undoubtedly fail towards their end of life.
So what is the cost of a malfunctioning UPS to your customers business critical services? Less than £15 a month? Probably not. If you’re honest it’s way more.
Today APC by Schneider Electric and our network of partners have an installed base of between 8 and 8.5m UPS units around the world. Although it is estimated that only 20% are currently part of a remotely managed service offering.
The remaining 80% represents a Total Available Market of about $5.5bn, and that’s before we consider the opportunities around the growth of data that’s happening right now.
In terms of security, our next generation Smart-UPS SRT models are compatible with APC’s Network Management Card and are fully integrated with the latest version of the company’s PowerChute Network Shutdown software; which provides your customers with secure remote monitoring and control of an individual UPS from anywhere, at any time.
The installed base is already enabled for remote management and it is only going to get bigger. This is surely low-hanging fruit for ambitious MSPs looking to grow and differentiate their businesses.
In my next blog I’ll talk about some other areas of data centre infrastructure where MSPs can deliver new and innovative services. But surely a $5.5bn opportunity is enough to be keeping our partners busy, at least for the next couple of weeks!
If you’re interested in any of these opportunities and want to find out more, you register and gain access to all the information around our Channel Partner and Managed Service Partner Programmes by clicking here.