Not many years ago F5 Networks was a niche supplier of load-balancing technology. But the company has grown quickly as it expanded into application delivery software for deploying and managing applications across virtual and physical networks. That puts F5, and Ritchings and F5's channel partners, in a pivotal spot as software-defined networking takes off.
Under Ritchings F5 Networks in 2013 designed a deal-registration system to reward partners whose customers procure and deploy F5 products in multiple countries. The company reported significant year-over-year revenue growth across all partner segments last year.