Avaya Confirms New U.S. Channel Chief3:58 PM EST Tue. Oct. 11, 2011
Avaya has a new U.S. channel chief, and to observers of the networking channel, he's a familiar face.
Karl Soderlund, most recently senior vice president, worldwide sales and business development at WAN acceleration upstart Certeon, will be officially named vice president, U.S. channel sales, at Avaya later this week.
A veteran of Fortinet, Cisco and Extreme Networks, Soderlund is perhaps best known to partners as the former Americas vice president and general manger for sales and marketing at HP ProCurve (now HP Networking), where he worked from November 2008 to May 2010.
Soderlund reports to Steve Fitz, Avaya vice president, U.S. sales, according to Avaya. His move fills a vacancy in Avaya's channel executive ranks left by Carol Giles Neslund, who departed the role in April after three years with the vendor.
According to Neslund's LinkedIn profile, she is now senior director of sales at Enphase Energy, a Petaluma, Calif.-based specialist in solar energy technologies. Avaya Vice President John Spilliotis, who had Neslund's U.S. role on an interim basis, will return to the Avaya organization under Tom Mitchell, senior vice president and president, Avaya go-to-market, where he'll focus on sales engagement.
Soderlund's move is the latest example of several years' worth of significant executive changes at Avaya, which is preparing to become a public company again. Avaya filed its Form S-1 with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission, targeting an IPO of $1 billion in common stock, in June.
Soderlund was unavailable for comment Tuesday. At Certeon, he was credited with building the WAN optimization company's fledgling channel program and appealing to partners with aggressive incentives like a guaranteed 20 percent margin for qualified solution providers.
"Karl was a key driver of getting the Certeon channel program off the ground," said Peter Dougherty, Certeon's CEO and co-founder, in a statement e-mailed to CRN. "He accomplished the mission he was hired to do for Certeon and left on excellent terms to pursue new opportunities. We benefited tremendously from having someone of his caliber assist us in our channel efforts."
Certeon has added to its own executive ranks to fill the sales and marketing vacancy. Among recent hires is Susan Roberts, senior vice president, sales and marketing, who joined Certeon following years of executive positions at Oracle, Virtual Iron and Cisco.