30 Notable IT Executive Moves: July 201210:00 AM EST Thu. Aug. 02, 2012
The first half of 2012 was rife with major executive moves up and down the IT industry, and if July is any indication, that trend won't slow down in the second half. From three major CEO shakeups to a slew of channel chief exits and reassignments, here were the moves that made headlines in July.
Symantec's first quarter earnings plunged nearly 10 percent, and it cost Enrique Salem, who'd been CEO of the security powerhouse since 2009, his job. Salem was fired by Symantec in late July and replaced with Steve Bennett, who'd been chairman of Symantec's board since 2011 and was previously CEO of Intuit from 2000 to 2007. The move left Symantec solution providers and analysts wondering if a breakup of the company along its storage and security lines is the next step.
It was a surprising coup for Yahoo: Marissa Mayer, well known as Google's 20th employee, top female engineer and a major figure in Silicon Valley, was named CEO of the struggling search engine company in mid-July. As Mayer looks at how to turn Google around, she'll do so without chief executive runner-up Ross Levinson, Yahoo's former head of global media and interim CEO, who confirmed his departure from Yahoo a week after Mayer's appointment.
VMware's made some eye-popping moves lately, including a $1.2 billion acquisition of emerging network virtualization player Nicira. But, the biggest move of all was a somewhat surprising choice to replace CEO Paul Maritz, who on Sept. 1 will move out of VMware's chief executive slot and into EMC, which majority-owns VMware, where he'll be chief strategist. Replacing Maritz as VMware CEO ...
... is Pat Gelsinger, most recently president and COO of EMC's information infrastructure products division and often eyed as a potential successor to EMC CEO Joe Tucci. Gelsinger came to EMC in 2009 following a 30-year run at Intel.
Given the extraordinary growth of Apple in the last 10 years, any time one of its major executives moves on, industry watchers take note. That was the case in late June, when Apple confirmed that Bob Mansfield, SVP of hardware engineering and one of the driving forces behind the Mac, iPhone and iPad product lines, would retire after 13 years at the company. Mansfield joined Apple in 1999 following its acquisition of Raycer Graphics, and his day-to-day duties will transfer to Dan Riccio, vice president of iPad hardware engineering.
In addition to the Paul Maritz and Pat Gelsinger moves, EMC made a number of additional changes to its top executive team in July. David Goulden, a 10-year EMC veteran, was named president and COO and will keep his title of CFO. Howard Elias, currently president and COO of information infrastructure services, will assume added responsibility for EMC's solutions group and corporate shared services business. And, Jeremy Burton (left), EMC's chief marketing officer, is now executive vice president, product operations and marketing.
In a move that may signal that Cisco wants to exert more control over VCE, the joint data center venture it maintains with EMC, Praveen Akkiraju, a 19-year Cisco veteran, was named VCE's CEO in mid-July. VCE, without an official CEO since Michael Capellas moved into a vaguely defined chairman role in 2011, said that Akkiraju is joining the company as an "extension to the management team." Akkiraju was most recently Cisco's senior vice president and general manager, Services Routing Technology group.
A month after Cisco confirmed that Bruce Klein would succeed Keith Goodwin as head of its Worldwide Partner Organization, Cisco made more changes to its Americas-based channel leadership. CRN was first to report that Jim Sherriff, who'd been SVP, Americas partner organization, since 2010, is moving into a new role running the sales aspect of Cisco's Accelerated Cisco Transformation (ACT) project, a companywide initiative looking at Cisco's product, services and operations evolution over the next few years.
Replacing Sherriff in the running of Cisco's Americas channel sales is Wendy Bahr, who is returning to the role -- albeit adding Latin America channels from her previous duties -- following two years as head of Cisco's global and transformational accounts team.
Cisco's made a number of major executive changes in the past few months -- a usual occurrence at the end of its fiscal year. Following Edzard Overbeek's transition to heading Cisco's global services organization in June, the networking king had an opening for the head of its Asia Pacific, Japan and Greater China (APJC) theater, and that job went to Jaime Valles, most recently executive vice president of Cisco Latin America.
It was a month loaded with CEO exits, and that trend extended to Barracuda Networks, whose CEO, president and co-founder, Dean Drako, said in early July that he would step down. Drako will continue to serve on Barracuda's board, while Board member Gordon Stitt, CFO David Faugno and CMO Michael Perone will share Drako's management responsibilities until a replacement is named.
Broadvox has added a number of telecom channel veterans to its ranks since hiring former Speakeasy and MegaPath mainstay Bruce Chatterley as CEO in March. The latest is Chris Gellos, who was most recently SVP of sales at MegaPath and lead the integration of sales teams following MegaPath's mergers with Speakeasy and Covad. Gellos role at Broadvox is EVP of sales, and he'll head the company's overall sales organization, including direct, indirect and telesales, as well as customer account management.
Global smartphone power HTC in early July confirmed Mike Woodward as its new president of North America, reporting in to Jason Mackenzie, president of HTC's global sales and marketing. Woodward is well-known in telecom circles for his years at AT&T and the former Cingular and AT&T Wireless, where he was most recently vice president, consumer wireless device and accessory portfolio.
Microsoft confirmed in mid-July the hiring of Mark Penn, a former advisor to both Bill Clinton and Hillary Clinton, to lead a team of managers within Microsoft focused on consumer initiatives. Penn was most recently CEO of public relations powerhouse Burson-Marsteller, and at Microsoft, he will report directly to CEO Steve Ballmer.
A number of former Autonomy executives left HP following its acquisition of the U.K. software company last year, and a few have moved on to other ventures. Co-founder and former CEO Mike Lynch, who was booted from HP in May after what was described as a "very disappointing" fiscal Q2, appears to be setting up a London-based investment fund to help fledgling technology companies.
Hard-charging upstart videoconferencing software specialist Vidyo is continuing to expand its executive team, and in mid-July confirmed David Kaminsky as its new chief financial officer. Kaminsky, who was most recently EVP and CFO of $1.2-billion-integrator NTT Data Americas and previously worked for Altegrity and GE Capital, comes to Vidyo following what the company described as a record 2011 with an 82 percent increase in billings.
Avaya's been a carousel of executive departures and appointments lately. Among the most recent in the latter category was Mark Wilson, who joined Avaya as chief marketing officer in mid-July. Wilson was most recently SVP of corporate and field marketing at Sybase, with 17 years at the company.
Frank Rauch was among several well-known HP executives to depart the company in recent months, and in late June, was officially confirmed as vice president, VMware Americas partner organization. Rauch, a 24-year industry veteran who'd been with HP since its acquisition of Compaq, reports to Jeff Casale, VMware's senior vice president and general manager, Americas business.
Sourcefire in early July confirmed that CEO John Burris would take a medical leave of absence to be treated for colon cancer. Founder and CTO Martin Roesch was named interim CEO while Burris is away.
"It is in my best interest and that of the company that I take this time to focus on my health, while Marty and the rest of our proven and highly experienced executive team continue to execute the strategy we have developed together," Burris said in a statement.
Steve Houck, who was VMware's senior director of global channels before moving to run the company's Latin America markets in 2009, was confirmed as the new chief operating officer of DataCore Software, a developer of storage virtualization products.
EarthLink made a key hire in Thomas Hobika, an 18-year telecom veteran who joined the service provider as vice president, IT Solution Consultants. Hobika was most recently vice president of XO's business development, complex solutions, sales engineering and program management business supporting Carrier and Enterprise Services.
Windstream in early June said it would cut up to 400 management jobs as part of an ongoing restructuring following its acquisition of Paetec, and among the casualties was Dan Sterling, who left his role as vice president of dealer sales at the end of June. Channel chief duties for Windstream now fall to Jeff Howe, president of Windstream's central region.
Nigel Williams is well-known in the channel thanks to channel chief stints at Cisco and Level 3 Communications, and as of late June, he's at the channel helm of network infrastructure specialist Ciena. Williams, based in Atlanta, is Ciena's vice president, global channels and strategic alliances. He'd been at Level 3 since 2008, and his most recent role there was vice president, business development.
David Petts joined ShoreTel in mid-July as senior vice president, worldwide sales, reporting in to ShoreTel CEO Peter Blackmore, with whom he worked at Compaq and HP a decade ago. Petts' move follows seven years at Nokia, where he'd held a number of VP- and SVP-level executive roles covering global sales, marketing, security, business solutions and Nokia's AT&T relationship.
Scott Thompson exited Yahoo not five months after becoming CEO thanks to a scandal that erupted over embellishments on Thompson's resume. Marissa Mayer was later named Thompson's successor -- Yahoo's fourth CEO in the span of a year -- but Thompson has since resurfaced as CEO of ShopRunner, an online shopping startup based in Philadelphia. Thompson had served as a ShopRunner director before his Yahoo hire in January 2012.
Movement among chip industry execs is nothing new, and one of the latest transitions was Bob Feldstein, who jumped ship from AMD to rival Nvidia in late July. Feldstein, who as corporate vice president of business development oversaw AMD's partnerships with video game console manufacturers, is now Nvidia's vice president of technology licensing.
Xand Holdings, which provides data center, cloud and managed services for enterprise customers, had a new COO in Keith Markley, now a member of Xand's executive team. Markley was most recently CEO of LAI Holdings, a KFH portfolio company focused on technology and manufacturing, and he had top executive roles at DSL.net, Covad and New England Fiber Communications.
Mike Volpi was a rising star executive at Cisco before leaving in 2007, and now he'll be playing a bigger role for an emerging Cisco competitor. FuzeBox, making noise in the cloud-based collaboration technology market, recently confirmed not only a $20 million Series A round of financing but also that Volpi, a partner at FuzeBox investor Index Ventures, would join its board of directors. FuzeBox competes with other cloud-based collaboration platforms like Cisco's WebEx and Citrix's GoToMeeting.
Guilty we are, here at CRN, of letting some key changes or executive appointments slip by us from time to time. In early June, Thinking Phone Networks brought on telecom industry veteran Rob Shelby as regional vice president, channel sales, in charge of all channel sales efforts for the cloud communications specialist. Telecom partners know Shelby for his years in channel chief roles at Masergy, McleodUSA, and Allegiance Telecom.
HEROware, which focuses on high-speed data protection and data recovery solutions with an eye toward compliance and business continuity, made some big changes in its executive suite in mid-July. Founder Lynn Shourds stepped down from his position as president and CTO, though he will remain on HEROware's board of directors and a leading equity shareholder. Meanwhile, Bob Erickson, HEROware COO, is joining the board and will also expand his purview to include HEROware's investor relationships, and Rob Ryan, director of sales, is moving up to executive vice president, sales, marketing and customer service. In addition, Paul Moore, HEROware's director of technical services, is now vice president, professional services and customers support.