2015 Channel Chiefs Details


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One of our "50 Most Influential Channel Chiefs"

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Bob Gault

Extreme Networks

Vice President, Global Channels and Partners

Bio and Background: Gault is responsible for shaping Extreme Networks' global channel partner program into a core element of its growth and innovation strategy. He and his team will create and implement strategies that help channel partners capture emerging profit pools and new revenue streams as Extreme Networks solutions are positioned as the 'on-ramp' to the cloud. Gault leads a global ecosystem of 2,500 global and national channel partners and distributors backed by Extreme Networks' sales organization, its innovative product portfolio and award-winning service and support organization. Gault has more than 28 years of experience in sales and marketing with service providers and partners. Prior to Extreme Networks, Gault spent over 16 years with Cisco, where he served as vice president of worldwide cloud and managed services channel sales. He has also held senior leadership positions working directly with service providers including AT&T, MCI, and Sprint. He holds a Bachelor of Science degree in Business from West Chester University, Pennsylvania.

Number of years with the company: 0.1

Number of years involved with indirect sales: 28

Reports to: Jeff White, Chief Revenue Officer

Does that individual report to the CEO/president: Yes

Number of employees in channel organization: 125

Top products sold through the channel: Data Center BlackDiamond X8 fast, high density 10/40 & 100 GBE Data Center switch Summit X670 Series high-density, low latency 10 Gigabit Ethernet stackable switches Summit X650 Series server virtualization and 10 gigabit aggregation Summit X480 Series versatile Ethernet switch Enterprise Edge & Core BlackDiamond 8800 Series modular core switch for mid to large enterprises Summit X460 G2 Series highly flexible & scalable Gigabit Ethernet switch Summit X440 Series highly flexible & lower cost stackable Ethernet switch Enterprise Mobility IdentiFi AP3825 Indoor 802.11ac 1.75Gbps capacity IdentiFI AP 3865 Outdoor 802.11ac AP up to 1.75 Gbps NetSight 6.1 network management suite

Partner organization's top accomplishments over the past year: In 2014, Extreme announced the new Extreme Partner Network (EPN) designed to simplify partner engagement and maximize partner profitability through a broader technology portfolio, global access to service offerings, enhanced incentives and comprehensive training. The new program brings Extreme and original Enterasys partners, stemming from the 2013 acquisition, into one program. The program offers a single global framework to simplify the way business is done empowering partners to deliver significant value to customers. We designed the EPN Solution Provider/VAR program with our 2,700+ global partners in mind, focusing on simplified engagement and maximized partner profitability through a broader technology portfolio, global access to expanded service offerings, enhanced incentives and comprehensive training. The company also introduced the Technology Solution Partner (TSP) Program, a strategic framework for partners to develop innovative networking solutions that span from the data center to the mobile edge. The TSP Program enables technology partners, solution providers, and solution architects to collectively develop integrated offerings that optimize IT investments, deliver new capabilities and services, and accelerate deployment of new solutions through validated designs.

How partner community has grown over the past year: In 2014, Extreme announced the new Extreme Partner Network (EPN) designed to simplify partner engagement and maximize partner profitability through a broader technology portfolio, global access to service offerings, enhanced incentives and comprehensive training. The new program brings more than 2,700 Extreme and original Enterasys partners, stemming from the 2013 acquisition, into one program.

How do you expect your channel sales as a percentage of your company's overall sales to change: Increase

How do you expect the number of channel partners you work with to change: Increase

Top channel goals for 2015: Add more qualified partners
Increase overall percentage of company revenue that comes through the channel
Increase the amount of recurring revenue going through partners

Single most innovative partner initiative in 2014: Extreme's channel team made a deep commitment to cultivating our Partner Advisory Counsel, comprised of leadership from national and regional partners. They come together to share views, and provide input about their experience with Extreme to drive to the goal of being more competitive, and more valuable in the eyes of their customers.

Key channel/partner investments made over the past year: Extreme made a number of investments in our channel organization to deliver the depth and expertise that our partners want. From extending our team of dedicated technical engineers, to hiring experienced marketing executives addressing partners, solutions and product distribution.

Plans for attracting the next generation of solution providers: With the launch of the new Extreme Partner Network in July 2014, we introduced accelerated profit opportunities to partners. This includes access to full technology/product portfolio, enhanced financial incentives including new global Deal Registration Program to protect and reward partners' pre-sales investments and additional service offerings to increase revenue opportunities. Additionally, the new EPN Program makes it easier to grow new customer business by providing more extensive partner enablement resources with an enhanced campaign Demand Center, a new global Extreme Development Funds Program and expanded world-class training and certification programs.

Advice to someone getting into the channel today: In the channel role, never forget to listen to your partners, be it weekly or even daily. Give them an unobstructed line of communication to the layers of management and especially right to the top. Learn from them, hear what their struggles are and how you can be better positioned to help them. It is often all too easy to think you know all the challenges, so remember not to let communication become one of them.

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