SMBs now need MSPs more than ever

Cloud illustrations on a blue background with a ladder

Small and medium-sized businesses (SMBs) are struggling in the face of growing challenges that are, in some cases, being made much more complex by the cloud rather than simplified.

So claims Datto CEO Austin McChord, who talked about how increasingly challenging the small business landscape has become and is becoming, while speaking at the firm's Dattocon event in Austin, Texas this week.

Given such a backdrop, SMBs will increasingly turn to managed service providers (MSPs) to provide the added layers of expertise and proficiency they either lack or can't afford to recruit internally.

"Small businesses are facing challenges. Whether it's regulation, security or the fact that moving to the cloud makes things more complex not simpler. Many of these small businesses don't have the knowledge or expertise to navigate this landscape," McChord said.

"The opportunity is massive. More than $40bn runs through small businesses. And up to 50% of this touches MSPs. By 2022m it's expected to be north of $72bn."

Datto announced a series of enhancements to its solution set both on the products MSPs service SMBs with as well as the PSA tools providers, many of which who are SMBs themselves, use to run their business.

It also made good on promises made at the last Dattocon event and also post news of the Vista Equity Partners acquisition and merger with Autotask. In particular, it pledged to continue to better help support partners so they can, in turn, better serve the varying needs of their own customers.

Choice seemed to be the watchword, and that led onto a commitment of greater openness and integration with companies such as Connectwise.

Mark Banfield, Datto's senior vice president of international, echoed the need for MSPs to support SMBs as they navigate a maze of complexity and uncertainty.

"Certain markets in the UK are dominated by SMBs. Germany, Italy etc are the same. UK MSPs will be the engine to deliver IT services to the SMB market. With such complexity, they need MSPs more than ever."

Maggie Holland

Maggie has been a journalist since 1999, starting her career as an editorial assistant on then-weekly magazine Computing, before working her way up to senior reporter level. In 2006, just weeks before ITPro was launched, Maggie joined Dennis Publishing as a reporter. Having worked her way up to editor of ITPro, she was appointed group editor of CloudPro and ITPro in April 2012. She became the editorial director and took responsibility for ChannelPro, in 2016.

Her areas of particular interest, aside from cloud, include management and C-level issues, the business value of technology, green and environmental issues and careers to name but a few.