Google channel chief Bertrand Yansouni is preparing to leave the Internet-services giant less than a year after he took the reins of the company's expanding partner program, Google confirmed Thursday.
Yansouni's resignation, first reported in tech news site The Information, comes at a critical time for the Mountain View, Calif.-based cloud provider, which is battling front-runners Amazon Web Services and Microsoft in an ultra-competitive cloud market.
Yansouni was recruited to the position of vice president for global partner sales and alliances in November by his former boss at VMware and current Google Cloud leader Diane Greene.
Google channel partners told CRN they learned of Yansouni's impending departure in recent weeks.
When he came to Google from Cloudera, where he led the big data startup's partner program, Yansouni was immediately tasked with leveraging Google's expanding partner ecosystem to challenge Microsoft and Amazon for cloud dominance. That was a tricky assignment for the seasoned channel executive, given his new employer had less of a channel heritage than other enterprise tech vendors of its size and significance, and a tradition of playing by its own rules.
But Yansouni told CRN in an interview a few months into the job that he was surprised by the channel sophistication at Google.
"One thing I just didn't appreciate coming into Google Cloud is how much of a vibrant ecosystem of partners already exists and the amazing contributions they've made to the growth of the business. I feel sort of a responsibility to build on that," he said in March.
During his brief tenure, Yansouni did implement some changes that pleased partners.
One of his first goals was to break down silos in the program, he told CRN. He focused his team on encouraging partners to represent the entire Google stack, from its G Suite productivity apps, to Maps, Chrome, Android, and especially Google Cloud Platform.
To that end, Yansouni oversaw changes in Google's go-to-market organization that aligned sales agents more by accounts, instead of product lines.