VNU Net: Silverback to stop firms monkeying around with networks

By Paddy Carter, VNU

US startup Silverback Technologies is looking for UK
partners to launch an outsourced network management service for
medium-sized businesses.

The company plans to put Linux boxes running network
management and security applications on to customer sites.
boxes will send information back to a central operations centre
where it will be processed and managed.

Called Infocare, the basic service’s US list price will be $2000
(£1270) a month. More sophisticated applications are
available as options.

John Igoe, chief executive of Silverback, said existing sales
models make network management and security too expensive and
complicated for most businesses, whereas paying a fee to have it
outsourced is affordable and hassle-free. “It’s cheaper than hiring
your own network manager,” he said.

Launched in the US last week, Silverback will provide the
service directly to users, using resellers as sales agents that
will receive a proportion of the monthly fee.

Silverback may allow UK resellers to offer the service
themselves, and is also considering using a distributor to act on
its behalf. Igoe said he hopes to launch the service in the UK by
the first quarter of next year and has begun discussions with UK

The service uses an Intel/Linux box running network inventory
and performance monitoring applications from AdventNet and security
from Network Associates. Options will include troubleshooting from
UK-based Riversoft and intrusion detection from a partner yet to be

Igoe said he named the company after seeing an exhibition about
Silverback gorillas in London. “I was impressed by how they looked
after the troop,” he said.