CRN Exclusive: BetterCloud's First Channel Chief Aims To 'Reignite' Partner Relationships


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BetterCloud has brought on its first channel chief to re-engage with existing Google-aligned partners and form new relationships that help branch out into other Software-as-a-Service ecosystems.

Emily Cataldo joined the New York-based cloud software management developer as vice president of channel three weeks ago, and is taking lead on formulating a strategy to reignite a partner base that has waned in recent years.

Cataldo cut her teeth in the channel at Cloud Sherpas, working with BetterCloud's founders, including CEO David Politis, at the pioneering Google Cloud partner acquired by Accenture in 2015.

[Related: BetterCloud Secures $60M E Round Led By Bain Capital, CEO Says Partners Will Have Bigger Role In Implementations]

Her goal at BetterCloud is to grow a channel that has declined even as the company has enjoyed success, she said.

"When they were off to a very fast-growing start with the Google ecosystem they did have a robust and active partner business," she told CRN.

Since then, BetterCloud has integrated its platform with other SaaS vendors, including Microsoft, Salesforce and Dropbox. While focusing on an expansion of products and alliances, the company lessened its attention on nurturing partner relationships.

But BetterCloud still has many partners leveraging its technology to manage Google's G Suite portfolio.

"We need to go and reignite, kick-start all those partnerships," Cataldo said.

That will involve educating partners on the new platform, enabling them with new services opportunities, and adding incentives to the current program.

Then she wants to recruit new partners specializing in some of those other vendors.

While BetterCloud's origin is squarely in the Google ecosystem, a few years ago its leaders saw the need to expand functionality as customers made clear they wanted a platform for managing best-of-breed SaaS.

In 2015, the startup rearchitected for a homogenous stack. Through APIs, BetterCloud now supports Office 365, Box, Dropbox, Salesforce, Okta, Namely, Atlassian, and Zendesk.

BetterCloud describes its product as SaaS Operations Management, although the industry is still trying to name the emerging category.

The expansion of the platform has generated an even greater need for a vibrant base of partners who can seize opportunities in the market for managing enterprise SaaS operations, Cataldo told CRN.

BetterCloud will broaden its channel program to incorporate different kinds of partners and foster more strategic relationships, she said.

Cataldo hopes to find resellers, systems integrators and distributors that work with multiple vendors that BetterCloud supports, and create new opportunities for their practices, she said.

Cataldo jokes her career was born in the cloud. She started at McKesson working on the sales team launching the health-care giant's first web-based solution. She later moved to a position working with partners co-selling and managing the cloud application.

Cataldo joined Cloud Sherpas in 2013, where she assumed management over the solution provider's global relationship with Google and built relationships with ISVs in the Google ecosystem.

After the company was acquired, Cataldo spent another two years at Accenture on the leadership team of the global systems integration giant's Google practice.

"I had the opportunity throughout those roles to work with the different types of partners," Cataldo told CRN, gaining exposure to product and services companies and technology distributors.

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