Print Provider Extends Service Offerings to Include IT, Cybersecurity to Address Changing Customer Needs


Utility Depends on Untangle for Network Protection and Compliance

Background

Carolina Business Equipment (CBE) has been a print provider for over 45 years, offering print services, copiers, scanners and document management to over 4,000 customers in South Carolina. CBE began offering managed IT services six years ago in response to the changing needs of its customer base, for whom print services started to take a backseat to other concerns driven by digitization. CBE’s mission is to provide clients with stellar service and the modern, comprehensive products and services that their clients need for their own businesses to grow and thrive.

John Morelock, the Director of IT Solutions & Services at CBE, took on the project of developing their own Network Operations Center (NOC) and utilizing a Remote Monitoring and Management (RMM) provider to create an effective IT managed service for their clients. “Our goal is to handle everything IT for our clients, whether it be a problem with their IT infrastructure, ISP, phone provider, or a firewall issue. We want to provide a one-stop full-service experience to our clients.”

Replacing Cisco

Originally, CBE relied on Cisco for their firewall/router customer needs, but as the majority of their clients were SMBs, the price point was not working. Morelock tasked his networking team to look for an alternative solution in a lower cost bracket. One of those network admins downloaded Untangle NG Firewall and suggested Morelock take a look at it. “I very quickly fell in love with the platform and the interface. It didn’t take me long to realize the benefit the entire suite of thirty-plus applications could provide to my clients.” Morelock and his team began introducing Untangle to their clients. “It was easy to introduce Untangle NG Firewall to our customers thanks to the downloadable software, free apps, and 14-day trial of all the paid apps. Now, 99% of our clients’ firewalls are Untangle.”

The ease of implementation is one of the top reasons Morelock and his team suggest Untangle to their clients. Untangle’s flexible deployment options allow CBE to deploy NG Firewall on Untangle appliances, in the public cloud, as a virtual machine, or on their own third-party hardware. “We show every client the cost savings and functionality of Untangle, but we’ve had clients state that they want to stick with their old firewall provider or their cheap off-the-shelf router,” said Morelock. “However, when they struggle with implementation, configuration, or other network problems, they call us to fix the problem, which most likely ends with Untangle being installed.”

One such client was a large print customer with previous Cisco experience who wanted to stay with them to filter their VOIP phones through the firewall. After three weeks with no success, the client called CBE to fix the issue, as the company could not afford for their phones to be offline. CBE was able to implement Untangle NG Firewall within one day, get the phones working immediately, and enforce VPN connections for their remote locations. “The client was surprised and very happy that we were able to solve the problem in one day. After seeing the full benefits of Untangle, the client now plans to install Untangle at each office to gain more visibility into and control over those networks,” said Morelock.

We find Command Center very helpful to easily access our NG Firewall deployments quickly, without having to physically go onsite.

– John Morelock, Carolina Business Equipment

Simplified Management

In order to effectively manage all their clients, CBE relies on Untangle’s cloud-based centralized management solution, Command Center. “We find Command Center very helpful to easily access our NG Firewall deployments quickly, without having to physically go onsite.” Command Center offers partners and customers with multiple sites remote management capabilities, zero touch provisioning and a ‘configure once, deploy anywhere’ methodology.

“Untangle’s flexible software solution allows us to install the product on our own hardware so we can brand and sell the solution as our own. Integrating IT managed security services into our print business was a strategic and profitable move for CBE. With only 200 of our 4,000 customers utilizing our IT services, we’ve added over $2 million renewing annual revenue. As our IT services branch continues to grow, we look forward to being able to provide more customers with the peace of mind that their networks are protected. ” John Eckstrom, President & Owner of CBE

Integrating IT managed security services into our print business was a strategic and profitable move for CBE. As our IT services branch continues to grow, we look forward to being able to provide more customers with the peace of mind that their networks are protected.

– John Eckstrom, Carolina Business Equipement

NG Firewall Fast Facts

  • Comprehensive network security at the gateway

  • Powerful reporting for easy monitoring and compliance checks

  • Remote management simplified with Command Center

About Untangle NG Firewall

Untangle NG Firewall simplifies network security with a single, modular software platform designed to fit the evolving needs of your organization. From content filtering to advanced threat protection, VPN connectivity to application-based shaping for
bandwidth optimization, NG Firewall delivers a bulletproof network security platform for organizations in any industry.