Aruba Taps Former Cisco, Avaya Exec As New Global Sales Lead

DiLullo succeeds Aruba's former global sales head Mike Kirby, who Aruba said will stay with the company in an advisory role to see out the transition.

DiLullo joins Aruba from Avaya, where he most recently served as president, Americas Field Operations. Prior to his five-year run at Avaya, DiLullo was vice president of worldwide sales and channels at SonicWall and, before that, was vice president of channels and worldwide distribution at Cisco.

[Related: Brocade, Aruba Look To Eliminate 'Cisco Lock-In' With New Joint Architecture ]

In his new role, DiLullo is tasked with overseeing Aruba's global sales and field operations. But he also plans to leverage his channel roots to drive growth opportunities for Aruba's roughly 800 North American partners, particularly around the company's ClearPass mobile device management (MDM) platformand new Aruba Central cloud-based management service.

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"The board and CEO [Dominic Orr] of Aruba -- at least this is what they've told me -- they liked my channel experience," DiLullo told CRN. "It's an area where Aruba has done some really great things over the past few years, but there's definitely an opportunity to do even more."

DiLullo said Aruba partners are especially poised for growth in 2014, as the adoption of mobile devices in the enterprise continues to soar and wireless networks become more pervasive than ever. These market trends, he said, will likely attract new solution providers to the Aruba PartnerEdge program.

"If I'm a [solution provider] right now and am making 30 percent or 40 percent or 50 percent of my annual revenue from doing things like setting phones on desks or lighting Ethernet ports, I would strongly recommend that a partner like that take a strong look at the Aruba business because I do think this is the wave of the future," DiLullo said.

Industry analysts seem to agree. IDC, for its part, predicts smartphones and tablets -- rather than PCs -- will dominate 87 percent of the worldwide smart connected device market by 2017.

For Aruba partners, DiLullo said, this means major growth opportunities around ClearPass, which provides a range of secure provisioning and management capabilities for Android, iOS and Windows devices.

DiLullo said partners also should place bets on Aruba's new 220 Series access points, which support the next-generation 802.11ac wireless standard and, according to Aruba, provide the bandwidth and speeds necessary for enterprises to wrap their arms around BYOD.

Lastly, DiLullo urged partners to embrace Aruba Central, a public cloud, subscription-based management service that arms organizations and partners themselves with a single point of management for multiple wireless sites or multiple Aruba Instant wireless LANs within sites.

The platform also lets Aruba partners offer Wi-Fi-as-a-Service, meaning they can remotely deploy, monitor and troubleshoot customers' wireless environments.

Sunnyvale, Calif.-based Aruba, according to IDC, is the second-biggest vendor in the WLAN market, in terms of market share, after Cisco. IDC also said that the worldwide WLAN market in the second quarter grew 10.8 percent year over year, with the enterprise segment, in particular, growing 14.8 percent year over year.