February 19, 2013, 12:30 PM

How Bitdefender gets a bigger bite of b2b market

With 80% of its sales to consumers, the software company is expanding sales to businesses.

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Bitdefender, a global provider of security software to some 400 million consumer households and companies, is taking several steps to build its market of selling to businesses through multiple online selling channels.

“80% of revenue is from the consumer side, and 20% from the business enterprise side, but those percentages are getting closer,” says Catalin Cosoi, the company’s chief security researcher. “Much of b2b is still focused on switching business cards and waiting for a call, but we’re moving toward more b2b e-commerce sales.”

Working with Avangate, an Amsterdam-based provider of e-commerce technology designed for selling across multiple business-to-business as well as business-to-consumer channels, Bitdefender is building faster growth in b2b sales while continuing to grow in b2c, Cosoi says.

To do that, it’s using several technologies and services from Avangate: an online shopping cart that processes b2c as well b2b sales, a network of thousands of affiliate web sites, and a web portal to connect with thousands of software resellers that typically offer business consulting services along with software products.

Working with Avangate has enabled Bitdefender to serve customers faster with fewer resources, while also expanding its networks of affiliates and resellers, Cosoi says. When introducing a new software product, for example, Bitdefender can make it available to all of its resellers in some 100 countries simultaneously through its Avangate partner web portal, instead of having to call or e-mail each reseller, Cosoi says. And with resellers then forwarding such information to their end-customers, this has also been a good way for Bitdefender to maintain relationships with the ultimate user as well as resellers, he adds.

In addition, Avangate’s software for managing reseller accounts enables Bitdefender to send each reseller separate product and pricing information based on such factors as their geographic location and local currency. Based in Romania, Bitdefender processes sales in about 30 currencies, Cosoi says. Avangate can handle more than 130 currencies, the company says.

Working with Avangate’s reseller portal and software enables Bitdefender to provide product information and software licensing keys faster and in larger volume, with fewer personnel, compared with operating without Avangate, Cosoi says. He adds that Bitdefender’s resellers can now typically process about 200 software orders per day, up from 20 to 30 before engaging Avangate.

Avangate, which is planning to launch later this year an e-marketplace for resellers in addition to its reseller portal, operates primarily on a revenue share model, charging 8% to 10% of a client’s transaction revenue, according to chief marketing officer Michael Ni. The company received $5.5 million in venture capital last year from the 3TS Cisco Growth Fund operated by European venture capital firm 3TS Capital Partners.

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