Dell VP Rance Poehler Heads To Pivot3, Says He’s ‘All-In’ On Channel


Pivot3 has nabbed one of the most experienced IT sales leaders in the business with the hiring of Rance Poehler as its new vice president of global sales and chief revenue officer.

Poehler joins the fast-growing hyper-converged infrastructure and hybrid cloud provider following a two-year stint with Dell as vice president of worldwide sales for its cloud client computing team, an $800 million business that represents Dell’s suite of cloud and desktop virtualization solutions.

“In my career, I really enjoy building and scaling businesses. So Pivot3 is kind of a perfect fit,” said Poehler, in an interview with CRN. “We’re not going to be what I consider today as a broad-based player, like maybe my friends at Dell, but we have a very unique niche that we will leverage and really scale our company on. … I see the channel as playing a very pivotal role in our strategy. I know the channel can help us with the scaling that we want to do in our business.”

[Related: Pivot3’s Ron Nash On Beating Nutanix, IoT And Hyper-Converged Momentum]

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Poehler is now responsible for leading Pivot3’s global sales organization, including channel sales, while also executing on the company’s growth and talent acquisition strategy. Prior to Dell, he spent 23 years at Panasonic. During his tenure as president of Panasonic System Communications Company, he led a $1.1 billion business-to-business North American division.

Poehler has sold a plethora of different types of technologies over the decades in top executive roles at Dell, Panasonic, IBM and Toshiba, while also garnering experience managing sales, engineering and business operations.

Poehler told CRN that he’s been “a huge supporter of the channel for many years.”

“I’ve had the opportunity to start companies really from scratch and scale a company and integrate a lot of various companies,” said Poehler. “Especially for the companies we built at Panasonic, I was a big advocate of a 100 percent channel [strategy]. I’ve built a lot of very strong relationships with the distributors, big VARs, and partners in general over the years.”

Pivot3, whose flagship hyper-converged infrastructure (HCI) solution Acuity was named one of CRN’s 10 Coolest New Hyper-Converged Systems Of 2018, is a provider of hybrid cloud, HCI, security and Internet of Things solutions. Powered by what it dubs as the industry’s only “Intelligence Engine,” Pivot3 automates the management of multiple, mixed application workloads while delivering performance at scale that eliminates unplanned downtime and aims to reduce the cost of traditional IT infrastructure by half.

The Austin, Texas-based company was recently named a ‘Challenger’ in Gartner’s Magic Quadrant for Hyper-Converged Infrastructure, which ranked Pivot3 on par with the likes of Huawei. Pivot3 saw a whopping 95 percent increase in average deal sizes and more than 50 percent revenue growth from Q1-Q3 2018 year over year.

Pivot3 CEO Ron Nash hired Poehler to drive sales momentum even further in 2019, saying he will have “an immediate positive impact” on the business.

“Rance has extensive experience building and expanding medium- and large-scale B2B organizations while creating a culture that motivates team members to contribute to their potential,” said Nash, in a statement. “He has consistently delivered margin and market share growth in complex organizations. We are thrilled to add this level of talent to our already strong group of sales leaders as we continue to create a formidable and highly experienced enterprise sales organization at Pivot3. Rance knows our segments and our technology so he’ll have an immediate positive impact.”

Poehler says he plans to scale Pivot3 via channel partners.

“We are scaling the business. We’ve got a very unique position in the market. We’re out offering solutions for hyper-converged that are tuned very nicely to VARs and integrators that want to provide full, end-to-end solutions,” said Poehler. “With our channel team, I’ll be front and center with our partners. Pivot3 had a bevy of strategies related to channel over the last few years, and I intend to go really all-in on the channel, and have a clear consistent message to our partners.”