HP Networking Snags Juniper Enterprise Marketing Exec


One of Juniper's top enterprise marketing executives has left the company for a key networking division post at Hewlett Packard, CRN has learned.

Mike Banic, formerly vice president, enterprise marketing at Juniper, started Monday as the new vice president of marketing at HP Networking, reporting to Marius Haas, HP Networking's senior vice president and general manager.

Banic's move was confirmed to CRN by both HP and Juniper.

HP's size and market presence give Banic an opportunity he "can't find every day," Banic said when reached by phone Wednesday afternoon.

"It's something that's going to give me fantastic personal growth. It's a much larger team, and also gives me a chance to be somewhere where I have access to senior decision makers and the ability to be a strategic adviser with our customers in a way I wouldn't find anywhere else," Banic said.

According to Banic, HP approached him about the opportunity and it was through getting to know Haas that he was convinced it was the right move.

"I really like his working style and he has a great reputation in the industry, plus a great fabric of connections at the company," he said, noting that he'll also be working alongside Bethany Mayer, vice president of marketing for HP's Enterprise Servers, Storage and Networking (ESSN) business, and above her, ESSN boss Dave Donatelli.

Banic will have a hand in shaping HP Networking's customer messaging, and also its channel messaging. That will be important, especially for HP partners watching the growth of the networking division following HP's acquisition of 3Com and the emergence of HP as a serious networking competitor to Cisco.

"The ingredients are there to make a fantastic solution," Banic said, adding that his team playing an important role with HP's channel is "definitely Marius' expectation."

At Juniper, Banic drove the go-to-market strategy for Juniper's enterprise product lines and was also close to its switching and data center strategies, including Project Stratus, the long-awaited data center initiative through which Juniper aims to create a single data center fabric for enterprises. (According to Juniper, Stratus is still on tap to be unveiled in the first half of 2011.)

Juniper executives told CRN that nothing will change about those strategies despite Banic's departure.

"Switching is an important growth driver for Juniper, and our 3-2-1 architecture is enabling our channel partners worldwide to help customers transform and simplify their data centers," said Frank Vitagliano, Juniper senior vice president of partners, Americas, in a statement provided to CRN. "Our go-to-market strategy for Juniper's EX Series is locked and loaded and continues to gain mind share and market share."

Among other recent executive moves, Juniper confirmed this week the hiring of Mike Porter as vice president, Americas enterprise central area, where he'll direct the company's direct and indirect enterprise sales organization in 15 central U.S. states.

Porter, most recently general manager of Microsoft's corporate customers for the central region of the U.S., reports to Juniper's Andy Zupsic, senior vice president, Americas Enterprise Sales.