A global Internet security company was going to roll out a converged product that would replace multiple existing hardware and software products with a single hardware platform and a single software platform. The company hired a new CEO, now a NextLevel partner, to lead this effort. During the engineering review process it became apparent that the converged product was not ready for release. In fact, it would never be releasable in the form envisioned in the original plan.


The executive team took a hard look at their internal processes and approach, and determined that developing a new converged product would take two years. The NextLevel executive helped define a series of objectives for continuing to sell their existing products while developing the converged product. This involved market research as well as soliciting feedback from customers and partners.

Once the client refined their strategic plan, the NextLevel executive solicited additional feedback from investment bankers, industry analysts and others in the industry. Some of the responses validated the revised plan. But they also received information about imminent threats that were previously unknown. They were able to proactively deal with these threats by integrating this information into the strategic planning process. Over the next two years, the team continued to incorporate information on new developments into their strategic planning.


  • The company was able to hold its revenue share while doubling the size of the addressable market through development of the converged product, which was released on schedule.
  • By incorporating the information obtained through a feedback loop process, the company also significantly improved product quality. Technical return rates, which historically had run from 8 to 30 percent, were reduced to less than 1 percent.
  • The company was ultimately sold at a 46 percent premium over market value.

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