New Citrix Channel Chief: Opportunity ‘Bigger Than I Thought’

Bronwyn Hastings, a veteran of Oracle and SAP channel organizations, sees a massive opportunity for partners to bring digital workspaces into the cloud.


Citrix's new channel chief is ready to guide more of the company's partners into the cloud, where she sees a massive opportunity awaiting them to deliver digital workspaces to a billion end-users.

Bronwyn Hastings is looking to leverage years of high-level channel leadership at enterprise giants Oracle and SAP to fuel channel growth and transformation at the Fort Lauderdale, Fla.-based virtualization software vendor.

As Citrix's new senior vice president for worldwide channel sales and ecosystem, Hastings told CRN that partners are critical to migrating the company's large base of enterprise customers to a modern portfolio of remote access solutions that deliver unprecedented flexibility and security.

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[Related: Citrix Systems: We Want More Channel Partners, Big Time]

Citrix's digital workspace solutions are carving out a new area of the market as companies look to keep increasingly mobile workforces engaged, Hastings said.

The opportunity to deliver that functionality through the cloud "is bigger than I thought," Hastings told CRN. Seizing it is "about how we make sure we expand the ecosystem's capability and expand the ecosystem."

Citrix Workspace is the product that makes that possible, boosting employee engagement and productivity. Partners and their customers recognize the tremendous value of enabling employees to securely access applications however and from wherever they need them to perform their jobs, she said.

But as far as channel initiatives and programmatic changes to achieve those goals, partners will have to wait—Hastings started the job less than two weeks ago, and is still in the phase of educating herself, doing partner counsels and getting feedback from the channel on how to effectively collaborate and innovate together, she said.

So far, "what stuck out most is the expansiveness of the customer base." Citrix customers are unusually loyal, because "they recognize the value of what has been delivered in the past," she said.

But Hastings is not looking to the past to guide her work going forward.

"I'm seeing what the lay of the land looks like to the partner base, not trying to look at history but how we create this opportunity for the future with them," Hastings told CRN.

"It's early, but as the pieces of the puzzle start to become more real to [partners], they are starting to realize more they have available to actually bring value to the customer."

Hastings, a native of Australia, spent the last three years at SAP as senior vice president of business development. Before that, she ran the German software giant's channel org in Asia for eight years as senior vice president for ecosystems & channels APJ.

She came to SAP after 13 years at Oracle, where she held many senior roles in the channel org, including one in which she ran the technology giant's global alliances and channels.

Hastings takes over from Diane Fanelli, another SAP import, who served as interim channel chief after Craig Stilwell, a highly popular and longtime Citrix executive, left the company in July to become chief revenue officer at Carbonite.

She reports to Mark Ferrer, Citrix' executive vice president and chief revenue officer, another import from SAP.

Citrix has more than 10,000 partners across several categories: Citrix Solution Advisor, Citrix Service Provider, System Integrator, ISV and Value Added Distributor.