Cybersecurity overtakes cloud as top area for B2B reseller investment in coming year

Cybersecurity overtakes cloud as top area for B2B reseller investment in coming year

London, 9th October 2023 - Cybersecurity is now the most popular area for future investment by business-focused technology resellers, according to the latest ChannelWatch report from CONTEXT, the IT market intelligence company.

The CONTEXT ChannelWatch Report 2023 is the most extensive survey of IT reseller sentiment anywhere, drawing on over 7,600 responses across Europe and South Africa.

This year, nearly half (45%) of respondents said they are going to invest in cybersecurity in the next 12 months, slightly more than the share who said they same about cloud products and services (43%) and networking (41%).

The overall priorities for B2B investment in the coming year remain largely unchanged from the 2022 survey, although Artificial Intelligence recorded a significant spike - from 9% of respondents last year to 14% in 2023. There is an ongoing and significant reassessment of investment priorities since the launch of ChatGPT last year, although the increase recorded in Europe pales in comparison with other regions, such as the Middle East.

"Given the importance of cybersecurity to corporate IT initiatives, its dethroning of cloud at the top of our reseller list of investment priorities is far from surprising. But we did expect more interest in AI," said CONTEXT Global Managing Director, Adam Simon. "At a recent event in Dubai, 55% of resellers there told us they were planning to invest in the technology. That should be a wake-up call for their European peers."

Elsewhere, in the B2C space, software was the only category in this year's report in which a greater share of resellers said they were going to invest versus last year. Nearly two-fifths (37%) of respondents said they planned to invest in software over the coming 12 months.

Reseller sentiment was largely stable this year. In only two countries did a smaller share of respondents say they expect their business to perform better in the next 12 months, versus last year's report.

The share dropped from 56% to 49% in France, and 90% to 87% in South Africa. But it grew slightly in Germany (56% to 58%), and Turkey (59% to 65%). Elsewhere it remained flat.

For the first time, the CONTEXT ChannelWatch study asked resellers about sustainability.

Interestingly, over half (57%) said they are being asked by customers for sustainable options either sometimes (42%) or very often (15%). Yet more worryingly, nearly half (46%) said that it's either hard (41%) or impossible (5%) to get key sustainability information - such as a product's carbon footprint or water consumption - from their distributors.

Although demand for sustainability metrics is most likely to come from large enterprise and government customers at present, this will no doubt expand to the wider market in time. That should be a spur for European distributors.



CONTEXT's market intelligence, performance benchmarks and opportunity analysis empower clients to optimise operations and accelerate tomorrow's revenues. With over 40 years of industry partnership and experience reporting on large datasets, CONTEXT delivers analytics at all points in the value chain, providing clients with actionable insights rooted in concrete data and a profound understanding of customer needs. CONTEXT is headquartered in London, with over 350 staff across the world and in 2022 was recognised as one of the UK's Best WorkplacesTM by Great Place to Work®.

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