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Fortinet has tapped two executives to lead its sales channel in the U.S., Canada and Latin America, and both channel leaders tell CRN their focus will be on improving communications and boosting partner certifications training to foster growth upstream to larger businesses.
The Sunnyvale, Calif.-based network security appliance maker named Bryan Wood its U.S. channel chief after spending. Wood was previously vice president of U.S. channel and mid enterprise sales. Peter Brant, who served as vice president of Americas enterprise sales, was promoted to vice president of Americas sales.
The Fortinet promotions fill vacancies left by two channel executives that left this year to oversee channel operations with U.K.-based security firm Sophos. Channel veteran Michael Valentine left in February to lead Sophos' global channel sales. Kendra Krause, Fortinet's former vice president of channel sales, left in April to oversee Sophos' Americas channel program.
Wood, who has been at Fortinet for the last seven years, said channel partners will see no significant changes to the FortiPartner Program. Fortinet has been encouraging growth with an incentive program that gives partners a kickback on the back end of sales, Wood said. Partners that finalize sales opportunities at $10,000 earn a 3 percent kickback, and those who finalize sales over $100,000 earn a 5 percent kickback, Wood said. The company continues to make certification training affordable, offering onsite classroom-led training and virtual classes. Fortinet is working to encourage partners to take advantage of the training, Wood said.
"From the benchmarking we've conducted, we believe this is a fairly aggressive incentive program," Wood said. "Our partners are seeing profitability, but there are minor directives that we're executing on to enhance how they operate with us."
The company is also increasing outreach to partners, Wood said, putting a greater emphasis on reaching out to partners via mobile devices. Fortinet is introducing push notifications for iPhone and Android users with an app that will enable deal registration and access to other information such as product documentation.
Wood started his career at 3com where he worked in a sales and business development role. He also worked at UTM vendor Watchguard technologies and security information and event management vendor, NitroSecurity, which was acquired by McAfee in 2011.