Citrix Appoints New U.S. Channel Chief

Bill Burley has been serving as Citrix's vice president of North American channel sales since rejoining the company in September 2004.

Burley was named as Citrix's first U.S. channel chief while Ross Brown served as head of worldwide channel operations and strategy for Citrix.

Burley will be succeeded as U.S. channel chief by Dennis Eilks, a three-year Citrix veteran who formerly worked in sales posts at Intercept Security and NetScreen, which were respectively acquired by Network Associates and Juniper during his tenure. Eilks joined Citrix in 2003 and has led the central area of Citrix channel group.

The changes, effective Monday, were announced to partners in a letter, the company said.

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In a brief interview with CRN, Al Montserrat, vice president and general manager of North America for Citrix, said any one of his area vice presidents would have been good for the job but Eilks has demonstrated significant success driving channel sales and partner certifications in the U.S. central region.

"Dennis has had tremendous success in the central area, which has become one of the most productive in North America. Last year central led in North America in access suite sales and currently the central region ranks highest in partner certification and compliance in the U.S.," Montserrat said. "The channel mindset he has instilled in his management team, his planning process, and focus on account engagement are respected. Partners have a lot of respect for his leadership."

One partner who is familiar with Eilks agreed with that assessment.

"I can only view this as a positive move," said one Citrix partner in the central region, who declined to be named. "The Citrix channel is very healthy and is still the best channel program out there. Burley is going to focus on the SMB space, which is pretty new for Citrix Access Essentials. Burley is pretty aggressive, which explains the move to me. "

Burley's exit comes roughly a year after Citrix's former worldwide channel chief and global channel strategist, Ross Brown, resigned to join eEye Digital Security.

Brown, now CEO at eEye Digital Security, said in an e-mail to CRN gave a positive nod. "I know Dennis well," Brown said. "He is a good logical choice and it's a good move."

Burley joins the products group and reports directly to Scott Herron. In his new role, Burley will serve in the company's newly named Virtualization Systems Group as product line executive for Citrix Access Esssentials, an SMB product Citrix co-developed and markets with Microsoft.

Montserrat said the timing of the announcement is appropriate since Citrix will host iForum, its annual products and technology event for customers, later this month.

Mitchell Parker will continue to serve as Citrix's vice president of channel programs and sales operations. He assumed that post in October of 2005.