Former Cisco Invicta Sales Chief Lands At Enterprise Mobile Startup Lua

Ryan Snell, a top sales executive for Cisco Systems' Invicta solid state storage unit who left the company earlier this month, has landed at Lua, an enterprise mobile messaging startup.

Snell is now vice president of sales for the Americas at Lua, the New York-based vendor said in a press release Tuesday.

Snell was the third employee at Whiptail, the storage vendor Cisco acquired last September for $415 million and subsequently rebranded as Invicta. At Lua, he'll report to Brian Feller, vice president of global sales, who founded the original sales team at Whiptail in 2009.

[Related: Cisco Invicta Sales Chief Exits Amid Shipment Delays]

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Snell will be tasked with selling enterprise mobile messaging technology, a space that's heating up as organizations look at how to equip geographically dispersed work forces with ways to communicate securely and quickly. It counts the U.S. Department of Defense as a customer.

Lua is focused on selling through the channel, and it launched a partner program last month that aims to get more enterprises adopting the technology for their decentralized workers. Entisys, a Concord, Calif.-based enterprise solution provider, is one of the first partners to sign up.

Lua has received $10 million in four funding rounds since its founding in 2011, including a $7.5 million Series A round from Archangel, Aaron Stone, Strauss Zelnick and Abundance Partners.

Snell's departure from Cisco comes as the networking giant continues to deal with technical problems with its UCS Invicta flash storage product. While some Cisco partners have their doubts about UCS Invicta, Snell told CRN in an interview Monday that the product is solid.

"The Invicta product line is in extremely talented and capable hands over there, and the technology will go very far with the company. Cisco's customers and partners will be very pleased," Snell told CRN.

At Cisco, Snell built a specialized sales force to drive sales of UCS Invicta and served as Cisco's main subject matter expert on Whiptail and solid state systems.

Snell has previously worked in sales positions at Symantec, where he focused on endpoint security and management; and Citrix Systems, where he sold software for delivering apps and desktops to mobile workers.