N-able launches inaugural global futurology study: MSP Horizons Report

First of its kind research, in partnership with Canalys, offers deep insights into some of the biggest future trends shaping the MSP market, featuring quantitative data and interview excerpts.

N-able has launched its MSP Horizons Report in partnership with leading channel analyst firm, Canalys. The first of its kind for the managed services market, the report delves into some of the biggest disrupting trends for 2024 and beyond, with actionable insights for MSPs and the future of their own businesses. The research was unveiled at the Beyond the Horizons event today featuring N-able President and CEO, John Pagliuca; Canalys Chief Analyst, Jay McBain; N-able CTPO Mike Adler; and hosted by N-able GVP, Product Management, Laura DuBois, with N-able’s Head Nerds.

Commenting on the survey, Canalys’ McBain stated: “MSPs around the world are about the most optimistic of any of the business areas we cover. 65 percent of respondents are expecting to grow by double digits in 2024, and we predict a compound annual growth rate of 11 percent up to 2027. The MSP Horizons Report 2024 will help these businesses capitalize on the opportunities in the market and continue to drive growth in the sector to 2027 and beyond.”

Key findings in the report include:

Growth:

According to the study, MSPs are on a solid growth trajectory, with 97 percent of those surveyed citing managed services revenue growth this year, with more than 335,000 global IT channel partners selling those services at US $419 billion in revenue for fiscal year 2023. New customer acquisition, budgets, and skills topped the list of challenges.

Tech Stack:

The research showed that security goes deep with more than 80 percent citing growth in cybersecurity managed services, and four of the six biggest opportunity areas over the next three years including MDR, network security, endpoint security, and vulnerability scanning. Cloud and endpoint management also topped the list—however, 66 percent of respondents reported that they are embracing a hybrid model and that there is still a place for on-premises, with only seven percent saying it was “dead.” In addition, the research revealed that while a unified approach to monitoring and management is gaining traction, the traditional RMM is still at the core of the MSP model. When it comes to RMM, survey respondents cited the need for more integrations such as embedded EDR and other security functions, and the ability to operate seamlessly within the RMM.

Changing Models:

Despite a constantly changing MSP landscape, more than half of those surveyed said that they are fully embracing the new ecosystem model, taking on more co-managed opportunities, co-partnering, and hybrid approaches.

AI:

When it comes to AI, 88 percent said they use it as an embedded feature of their existing tool set and want more embedded AI features. A majority cited that they are using it for content generation, but automation across cyber, backup and data analytics is high in demand.

“Today’s MSPs want and need to go further and faster and we have always prided ourselves in helping our partners do just that,” stated Pagliuca. “This is why we teamed up with Canalys to launch The MSP Horizons Report 2024. If you’ve ever attended one of our Empower events you will have heard us talk about ‘the answer being in the room.’ We can’t answer all the questions this report raises on our own, but we can start and facilitate those discussions—discussions that we hope will help lead our partners towards true transformation for long-term success.”

This survey was conducted from October 2023 to November 2023. Partners were asked to provide feedback via an online questionnaire on Canalys’ Candefero website. The survey captured feedback from 354 business-to-business channel partners across EMEA, North America, APAC, and Latin America. The report compiles the results gathered from the online survey and qualitative interviews.

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