SonicWall: 30 Years of Partnering to Win


SonicWall has always been 100% channel-driven. Today, we’re honored to work with more than 17,000 channel partners worldwide — but even before SonicWall was known as SonicWall, we were working to build partnerships based on trust, loyalty and mutual success.

As early as the mid-1990s, SonicWall (then known as Sonic Systems) had already begun onboarding top resellers, value-added resellers (VARs) and systems integrators. By seeking out partner companies that focused on providing educational institutions and SMBs with high-quality, affordable inter-networking solutions, Sonic Systems was able to achieve tremendous growth in a short amount of time. This growth, in turn, fueled innovations that helped our partners and their customers continue to succeed.

SonicWall Launches Partner Recognition Programs

In recognition of these successful partnerships, in the late 1990s a newly rebranded ‘SonicWALL’ began developing a dedicated partner program. By 2000, this program had five distinct partner program levels — Reseller, Silver, Gold, Platinum and International Distributors — that would later become the foundation of today’s SecureFirst Partner Program.

The partner structure SonicWall currently employs dates back to 2004, when the Medallion Program was launched. This program was refreshed in 2007 to coincide with the launch of SonicWall’s first partner portal, PartnerLink.

In recognition of the unique needs of its Managed Security Services Provider partners, SonicWall announced its first MSSP program in 2005. This program was designed to help its channel partners grow their share of the managed services market and signaled a recognition of these partners that continues to the present day.

Partnering for a Successful Future: Today’s Programs

SonicWall’s partner programs have evolved a great deal since their inception, and today’s programs are more comprehensive and offer more benefits than ever before.

“At SonicWall, we listen,” said HoJin Kim, SonicWall SVP, Worldwide Channel, North American Sales. “We work incredibly hard to provide partners with everything they need in order to not only meet their yearly objectives, but exceed them.”

SecureFirst Partner Program

In 2016, SonicWall introduced the SecureFirst partner program. In the first 150 days, more than 10,000 partners registered to sell within the new program — 20% of which were new to SonicWall. Within a year, the program had grown 500% as partners around the world jumped at the opportunity to reintroduce SonicWall products to their comprehensive offerings.

The program’s ongoing success is due largely to its philosophy of partnering to win. In addition to the program’s goal of accelerating partners’ ability to be thought leaders in the ever-evolving cybersecurity landscape, it also offers a number of perks. These include competitive margins, deal registration protection, technical training, sales enablement, marketing and lead-generation support, and more.

In recognition of our commitment to going above and beyond for our solution providers, in 2021 the SonicWall SecureFirst partner program received a 5-star rating in the 2021 CRN Partner Program Guide. This annual guide provides a conclusive list of the most distinguished partner programs from leading technology companies that provide products and services through the IT channel.

SonicWall University

SonicWall University, an online partner enablement platform designed to keep SecureFirst partner sales representatives, pre-sales and support engineers at the forefront of both cyberthreats and security solutions, was unveiled in 2017. This free, on-demand online training portal offers pathways for partners to earn SecureFirst Sales and Technical Accreditations that directly influence increased revenue attainment.

SonicWall MSSP Program

In 2020, SonicWall’s MSSP program was modernized to empower MSSPs with the resources and tools they need to protect their customers while improving operational efficiency and costs. In addition to branding and customization options, the new MSSP structure empowers SecureFirst partners to consume SonicWall services on either a monthly or annual basis, matching the way they do business.

SonicWall relies on its expansive base to fuel its momentum and is dedicated to continuing to grow programs like these to further meet the needs of our partners in the future.

As SonicWall moves into its third decade, we’d like to take this opportunity to thank our partners for their loyalty and commitment. It is both our mission and our privilege to continue working toward our mutual success in the years to come.

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Amber Wolff
Senior Digital Copywriter | SonicWall
Amber Wolff is the Senior Digital Copywriter for SonicWall. Prior to joining the SonicWall team, Amber was a cybersecurity blogger and content creator, covering a wide variety of products and topics surrounding enterprise security. She spent the earlier part of her career in advertising, where she wrote and edited for a number of national clients.