As Apple Pushes For Business Customers, A Top Enterprise Sales Exec Departs

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The executive responsible for leading Apple's charge into the enterprise has departed the Cupertino, Calif.-based company after two years in the job.

John Solomon joined Apple as vice president of enterprise and government in January 2015. His LinkedIn profile shows that he left Apple in January, and the profile lists his current position as "TBD." Solomon's departure was first reported by Reuters.

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Apple did not immediately respond to an email from CRN, and Reuters said Apple confirmed the departure but declined to comment.

Mike Hadley, CEO of Boston-based Apple partner iCorps Technologies, said Apple has "always struggled" in penetrating the enterprise space, and he saw little improvement during Solomon's tenure at Apple.

"They're consumer first, business second. They've always had that mentality," Hadley told CRN. "That comes across clearly in everything Apple does."

Hadley added that he'd like to see "a true commitment to the enterprise and the corporate world" at Apple. But, he said, "I don't think they're ready to really jump in and attack the enterprise and the corporate world. They really need to make a commitment to the channel."

Apple's main focus in boosting its business sales has been on partnering with vendors that are already strong in the enterprise, such as IBM, Cisco and SAP. Apple doesn't break out its enterprise sales in its financial disclosures, but CEO Tim Cook said during the company's fiscal 2017 first-quarter earnings call on Jan. 31 that Apple is "making great progress in the enterprise market."

The total number of joint customer opportunities with Cisco, for instance, grew by more than 70 percent during the most recent quarter, Cook said during the call, without offering a baseline number for comparison.

Before joining Apple, Solomon had spent two decades at Hewlett Packard, and had most recently been general manager of HP's consumer printing global business unit.

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