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Hitachi Vantara Snags Cohesity Channel Exec To Run Partnerships, Alliances

Todd Palmer, a seasoned channel executive with years of experience at Cohesity, Palo Alto Networks, NetApp, and CA, is taking over the role that Mike Walkey, a 13-year Hitachi veteran, held until recently.

Hitachi Vantara has brought on former Cohesity Channel Chief Todd Palmer as its new senior vice president of strategic partners and alliances.

Palmer has taken over the role from Mike Walkey, a 13-year veteran of Hitachi Vantara and Hitachi Data Systems, as the company was known before it changed its name in 2017. A Hitachi Vantara spokesperson confirmed via email that Walkey is retiring from the company and did not leave to join another company.

Palmer served as vice president of worldwide channels at San Jose, Calif.-based Cohesity for just over two years, following nearly three years as vice president of Americas channel sales at Palo Alto Networks and prior channel and sales roles at NetApp and CA.

[Related: Hitachi Combines Data Center Infrastructure, IoT, Big Data Capabilities In New Company: Hitachi Vantara]

Hitachi Vantara has been going through several executive changes this year. Asim Zaheer in April left as the company's chief marketing officer and is now chief marketing officer at Ellucian, a Reston, Virg.-based provider of software and services to the higher education market.

Furthermore, an industry source told CRN that the Hitachi Vantara has seen a large turnover in its marketing organization.

Mike Walkey did not respond to a CRN request for further information by press time.

A Cohesity spokesperson told CRN via email that the company is currently conducting an executive search to find a new leader for its partner organization, and that the company's channel teams for the time being will report to its sales leaders in each region.

Hitachi Vantara, in an emailed statement, wrote that Palmer will be responsible for accelerating the company's partner business and driving partner revenue and go-to-market execution globally. Palmer is also charged with leading the development of the company's partner and alliances ecosystem to help customers better leverage their data to achieve desired business outcomes, the company said.

Hitachi Vantara plays a unique role in the channel.

The company was formed in October 2017 by combining the Hitachi Data Systems storage and data center infrastructure business, its Hitachi Insight Group IoT business, and its Pentaho big data business into a new company aimed at delivering collaborative data offerings for commercial and industrial enterprises.

Walkey was instrumental in helping partners expand their relationship with the vendor as it morphed over the years, said Joe Kadlec, vice president and senior partner at Consiliant Technologies, an Irvine, Calif.-based solution provider which has worked with Hitachi for 16 of Consiliant's nearly 17 years in business.

"Walkey enabled us to be successful," Kadlec told CRN. "He was very supportive of our efforts to help bring new opportunities to our customers. He helped us organize a whole new IoT and intelligent edge business within Consiliant."

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