The Symantec-Veritas merger claimed another executive casualty Monday.
Symantec Vice Chairman and President Gary Bloom plans to leave the security vendor by March, the company said.
The former Veritas CEO, Bloom came to the Cupertino, Calif., security vendor as vice chairman and president with the Veritas merger, completed in July. Bloom initially shared the president title with Symantec's pre-merger president, John Schwarz, but Schwarz -- a key proponent of the merger -- left the company to become CEO of business intelligence software vendor Business Objects in September.
And in October, long-time Symantec channel chief Allyson Seelinger left the company. Seelinger was replaced by Julie Parrish, the former Veritas channel chief.
"The strength of the management team at Symantec gives me comfort in deciding to use this transition to take a break after almost 25 years in the high technology industry," Bloom said in a statement.
The lines of business currently reporting to Bloom will report directly to Symantec Chairman and CEO John Thompson. Bloom's current role as president will not be filled at this time.
"Gary has been a terrific partner in the merger and with the integration of the teams complete, this is a natural time for this transition," Thompson said in a statement. "I appreciate the dedication and passion he brought to Symantec."
Symantec solution provider partners didn't expect Bloom's departure to signal any major changes in how they deal with the company.
"They brought two good companies together and two good CEOs, so he took the position [as vice chairman and president] while they integrated them and brought them together. They’ve made good progress on that so now it’s probably time for him to move on and look for the next opportunity,” said Norm Shockley, CEO of Adeara, a Sunnyvale, Calif.-based Symantec partner that has worked with Veritas since before the acquisition.
Since the acquisition, Shockley said he has seen marked improvement in the Veritas channel programs.
“The Veritas channel programs are becoming more partner-friendly because of the merger, so I’m seeing them come together more with a common look and feel,” Shockley said.
Shockley said he expected to see little impact as a result of Bloom’s departure.
Bloom’s departure should in no way impact Symantec’s moves to introduce channel-neutral compensation to Veritas sales reps this spring, said Hayes Drumwright, CEO of Trace3, a Veritas partner in Irvine, Calif. “That’s something I think Symantec is driving, [not Bloom],” he said.
“Symantec is a pretty well-run company, if you just look at their stock, and they’ll do just fine without Gary,” Drumwright said. “[Bloom] definitely was well-regarded, but I don’t think it’s a surprise when you have a large merger like this that he’s not [needed as much] anymore.”
Despite some initial hang-wringing over the acquisition of Veritas Software by Symantec, former Veritas solution providers said that Gary Bloom left a positive impact on the combined entity and its channel.
Bloom did a great job with Veritas, taking it to where he thought it needed to be, said Pat Edwards, vice president of sales at Alliance Technology Group, a Hanover, Md.-based solution provider.
"So whether he goes pina colada on the beach or to a new company, he can be proud of what he did," Edwards said.
Time will tell whether the combination of Symantec and Veritas will be as successful as the two vendors hoped, said Edwards. "But so far, it's been positive for the channel," he said. "There's a new opportunity registration program in place. And we're working with some Symantec people we never saw in the past who have brought new offerings to us."
Bloom will not be known for what he did at Symantec as much as for what he did at Veritas, said Mark Teter, CTO at Advanced Systems Group, Denver-based Sun Microsystems and Symantec solution provider.
Veritas by itself had a challenged business model, but Bloom made the company a strong player by tying it to Symantec, Teter said. "It was sitting between systems vendors and storage vendors, and found it more and more difficult to create the Veritas advantages. So the move made sense."
During his tenure as chairman, president and CEO of Veritas, Bloom took it from being a midsize company and made it into an enterprise-class organization, Teter said. "He executed well in the engineering, sales and operations side," he said. "And he made us think about how instrumental security is to data management. And got to the point where he brought Veritas into Symantec."
One solution provider said that the acquisition of Veritas by Symantec can be seen as neither positive nor negative, as it is still a work in progress.
For instance, the solution provider said, the company recently reorganized the systems engineering management team in the Central U.S. territory, taking out a long-term Veritas SE manager and his manager and replacing them with a new channel SE who seems to have operated for some time without help from his superiors.
"There are still changes going on," the solution provider said. "But I hear that the changes will be finished by Symantec's new fiscal year. It's not good or bad. But it's what happens when you push two companies together."
LARRY HOOPER, JENNIFER HAGENDORF FOLLETT, JOSEPH F. KOVAR and THOMAS ZIZZO contributed to this story.