HPE CFO Tarek Robbiati To Take RingCentral CEO Job
Gina Narcisi, Steven Burke
‘We are at the forefront of our industry, developing differentiated, cutting-edge solutions to meet the emerging needs of our customers,’ says incoming RingCentral CEO Tarek Robbiati in a prepared statement. ‘My focus will be on our customers and delivering operational excellence and sustainable, profitable growth.’
Hewlett Packard Enterprise Chief Financial Officer Tarek Robbiati, who played a pivotal role in the company’s transition to an as-a-service model, is leaving HPE to become CEO of unified communications-as-a-service provider RingCentral.
Robbiati, who has been a member of the RingCentral board of directors since December 2022, replaces RingCentral founder and CEO Vlad Shmunis, who will become executive chairman with a focus on driving strategic product vision and innovation.
RingCentral also announced that President and Chief Operating Officer Mo Katibeh will be stepping down. Katibeh will stay on as a special advisor to the company to ensure a smooth transition, RingCentral said.
At the same time, RingCentral reported a GAAP operating loss of $45 million on an 11 percent increase in sales to $539 million for its second fiscal quarter ended June 30.
RingCentral shares were down 11 percent or $4.25 per share to $34.73 in after-hours trading.
Robbiati, the former CEO of telecommunications powerhouse Sprint before it was acquired by T-Mobile, put in place the annualized recurring revenue financial model that has helped power the HPE high-margin software and services shift to a GreenLake pay-per-use model.
Robbiati, who will officially step down as HPE CFO on August 25 and join RingCentral on August 28, joined HPE five years ago in order to lay the financial groundwork for the HPE as-a-service model.
“Tarek joined HPE as CFO shortly after I became CEO, and he has been an incredible strategic partner as we have transformed HPE to be the edge‐to‐cloud company,” said Neri in a prepared statement. “Together, we have shifted our portfolio toward higher‐growth, higher‐margin segments, and we are in a strong position to capitalize on significant market opportunities at the edge, in hybrid cloud and with A.I. We wish Tarek all the best as he takes the next step in his career as a CEO.”
With Robbiati teaming with Neri, HPE has more than doubled the company’s annualized revenue run rate while at the same time growing free cash flow.
HPE Senior Vice President, Corporate Controller and Chief Tax Officer Jeremy Cox, an 18-year HPE veteran, has been named interim chief financial officer while the company and its board of directors conduct a search for a new CFO.
In a prepared statement, Robbiati said he was “honored” to take the RingCentral CEO job. “The world and how we communicate is rapidly changing and this is an exciting time for RingCentral,” he said. “We are at the forefront of our industry, developing differentiated, cutting-edge solutions to meet the emerging needs of our customers. My focus will be on our customers and delivering operational excellence and sustainable, profitable growth. “
C.R. Howdyshell, CEO of Advizex, a Fulcrum IT Partners company, one of HPE’s top partners, said he is sorry to see Robbiati leave but is confident the robust GreenLake as-a-service model will continue to fire on all cylinders for partners.
“Our GreenLake sales pipeline is the highest it has ever been,” said Howdyshell. “I am sure that will continue with Antonio’s vision and drive.”