The MSPmentor team is starting to gear up for several major channel conferences in the near future -- including Cisco Partner Summit. But before we start mapping out our meeting schedules, here are seven managed services blogs and MSP news stories the MSPmentor team didn't have a chance to write for the week ending March 30, 2012.

7. Managed Security Service Leaders: Forrester has looked at nine managed security service providers to see which companies are tops in the North America market. We haven't seen the report but Verizon is celebrating its inclusion in the results. Obviously, the report covers giant companies but we're poking around to see if there are implications or tips for mid-market and smaller MSPs.

6. Advising on M&A: Cogent Growth Partners continues to assist MSPs with buy-side merger and acquisition activity. I hear they've been involved in several recent deals and we expect to share details soon.

5. Another Acquisition: Kronos has acquired SaaShr, and will now offer workforce management solutions through the IT channel. The solutions are specifically tailored for the SMB market. Side note: Kronos has more than 200 job openings worldwide.

4. From the Big Apple to the Big Easy: Leaders from GFI Software were in New York this week meeting with [names hidden]. Plus, it sounds like GFI will host a partner conference in New Orleans later this year. I suspect at least 200 to 250 MSPs and IT services providers will attend. I've got more info to share once I find the time to blog a bit more.

3. Interesting: What exactly is going on here?

2. Acquired?: Rumor has it another key software company in the MSP market has been acquired. Likelihood of rumor being true: 90%. Likelyhood of an official announcement in April? 85%. That's all for now.

1. The One Trait Most MSPs are Missing?: The old cliche suggests IT service providers (VARs and MSPs) are strong on technology but weak on business skills. But ConnectWise CEO Arnie Bellini says the biggest IT service provider weakness involves something else. What is it? I'll share that information in a blog the week of April 2...