Datto Exec Exit Leaves ‘Some Really Large Shoes’ To Fill

‘[Eric Torres has] brought a lot of incredible value to Datto, partners and the community and it‘s certainly a loss anytime somebody of that nature leaves any organization,’ says Solutions Granted CEO Michael E. Crean.


The departure of Datto channel leader Eric Torres will “leave some really large shoes to be filled,” partners told CRN.

Torres, who spent seven years at the MSP-focused data backup and cybersecurity vendor, was promoted to the director of channel development role at Datto in early 2020.

“[He has brought] a lot of incredible value to Datto, partners and the community and it’s certainly a loss anytime somebody of that nature leaves any organization,” said Michael E. Crean, founder and CEO of Woodbridge, Va.-based Solutions Granted. “I think he left a fantastic legacy behind him and put a lot of great things in place.”

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Crean said replacing Torres will take some time.

“Obviously, [Torres leaves] some really large shoes to be filled,” Crean said.

In a LinkedIn post Thursday, Torres said it was a “bittersweet” moment for him as he thanked Datto SVP of Business Development Rob Rae.

“Today is bittersweet as I’ve decided to leave my Datto family to pursue another challenge and adventure,” he wrote. “Starting as a small company and growing it to the force that is, it’s been one wild ride that I will forever be proud of. We’ve made lifelong friends and memories that we can all laugh at for hours…as we’ve done so every chance we could the past couple of weeks. Rob, I am truly grateful for every single opportunity you’ve provided for me….even those awful trips to the middle of nowhere, where not even Ubers travel.”

Torres has not yet made his next career move public, telling CRN that he would be starting his new job April 10.

At press time, Datto had not responded to multiple CRN requests for comment.

IT Innovators CIO Dave Seibert praised Torres for developing a culture of relationships during his time at Datto.

“I‘m hoping that he instilled that in everybody below him, meaning when he’s gone, that will continue - that culture, those relationships,” Seibert, a Datto partner of seven years, told CRN. “I’m hoping he instilled that in the team below him; hence, nothing should change if he did it right.”

Seibert sees Torres’ departure as a natural evolution of the company.

“I’ve been in this channel for 40 years. I’ve watched people come and go. To be honest, I expect it, meaning that’s part of the course. Most people get involved in a company, kick butt, and help it grow,” Seibert told CRN. “And then at some point, their goal is to have a successful, profitable exit. Most executives and most entrepreneurs want that.”

Siebert said the departures are an expected part of the evolution of what happens in the channel.

“For anyone to be surprised or shocked by a senior executive after many years wanting to exit, that’s a little naive,” he said.

Seibert said Torres’ exit indicates that his mission has been accomplished.

“Because the rumors are happening that Datto is going to have this sale, I would say that means he successfully did the role that he was asked to do,” Seibert said. “That’s a sign of accomplishment, not failure.”

Zac Paulson, CEO of Fargo, North Dakota-based MSP TrueIT, also said that Torres’ departure will have no impact on his business. Datto is TrueIT’s primary vendor for data backup and disaster recovery.

“I don’t think it’ll affect us that much. I don’t know if their day-to-day has that much influence on our partnership,” Paulson told CRN. “And the solution works well enough that there’s really not a lot of involvement that we have to have with executives or even Datto in general, as far as procurement and things like that.”

The only concern Paulson said he has is that if Datto is sold, whoever buys it continues offering the services they provide.

“But generally speaking, if they don’t mess up the solution and they keep offering good products, then I think we’ll be just fine,” he said.

Kevin Blake, president and CEO of 15-year Datto partner ICS, based in Endicott, New York, told CRN that Torres leaving the company would have no effect on his business.

“I don’t see this affecting our relationship and how we deal with Datto,” he said. “Their products, the solutions that we consume of theirs are rock solid. In the short term, I don’t see anything to how it’s going to impact us.”

Datto had 2,089 employees as of Dec. 31, 2021, of which 1,569 (75 percent) were employed in the United States, according to a regulatory filing with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission.

Speculation of the company exploring strategic options, including a potential sale after receiving takeover interest, first came out in a Bloomberg report earlier this month.

CRN reported in an earlier article that Datto is an enticing acquisition for private equity companies Vista Equity Partners and Thoma Bravo, according to Tim Mueller, president of martinwolf M&A Advisors. Vista Equity Partners is currently Datto’s largest stakeholder, with a 70 percent stake in the business.

In an email reply to CRN, Brian Steel, Vista Equity Partners managing director of strategic communications, said he couldn’t “comment on market rumors.” Thoma Bravo didn’t respond to a CRN request for comment via phone and email.