LifeSize CEO Steps Down


LifeSize on Tuesday said its CEO, Craig Malloy, would step back from day-to-day operations while remaining on the video vendor's supervisory board, and named a new CEO to take the helm.

Malloy, LifeSize's co-founder CEO of nine years, is now vice chairman of LifeSize's board. Colin Buechler, a former Dell executive and most recently LifeSize's senior vice president of sales and marketing, is now CEO. Buechler has been with LifeSize since 2007.

Guerrino De Luca, board chairman and acting president and CEO of Logitech, which owns LifeSize, applauded Malloy's tenure but said it was time for new leadership to continue to grow LifeSize as a video and infrastructure player.

"Every growing company comes to an inflection point and LifeSize is there now," De Luca said in a statement. "Colin Buechler's experience growing the LifeSize business as the leader of sales and marketing, along with his background in strategy and building larger businesses, is what LifeSize needs to continue its success story. I fully trust in Colin's leadership and vision for LifeSize."

Buechler's bump also makes him a senior vice president at Logitech, which acquired LifeSize for $405 million in 2009.

LifeSize told CRN Tuesday that Malloy is still part of LifeSize's growth strategy but wanted to focus on other projects.

"After nearly 20 years in the videoconferencing industry, including founding LifeSize and scaling it to the levels we have achieved, Craig is looking forward to balancing his time between guiding the ongoing growth of LifeSize while also returning to his entrepreneurial roots," said Michael Helmbrecht, vice president of product marketing. "Colin has been an integral part of LifeSize for the past five years and has the knowledge of our business and the passion for our industry that we need in a CEO."

Logitech and LifeSize have separate sales teams and channel programs, but the vendors' product roadmaps for business video and infrastructure solutions have begun to converge. In an interview with CRN last summer, Malloy and Eric Kintz, general manager for Logitech for Business, said Logitech would focus on sales through solution providers interested in packaging desktop video and communications tools for SMB and midmarket businesses.

Kintz's group, which launched in April 2011, had about 20 solution providers to start, while the LifeSize channel program has more than 1,600 channel partners worldwide.

In the past year, LifeSize has focused on expanding its product portfolio beyond video endpoints and infrastructure wares, and last summer launched LifeSize Connections, a cloud-based HD videoconferencing service aimed at businesses that don't plan to spend money on higher-end telepresence and desktop video endpoints. LifeSize's expansion has also included mobile solutions; the company acquired Mirial, a Milan-based mobile video specialist, in July.

Logitech and LifeSize have seen a number of significant executive changes in recent months. LifeSize's former channel chief, Dan Sibille, left LifeSize to become Polycom's vice president of North America channels in November, replaced by Sandy Hill. And Gerald Quindlen, Logitech's former CEO, was ousted in July 2011 following a series of disappointing earnings reports.