Brocade's Channel Chief Leaves As Questions Remain About The Company's Future

Brocade Communications' channel chief Pete Peterson has left the building after less than a year in the position.

Peterson's departure comes as Brocade prepares to be acquired by Broadcom later this year who plans to sell off the company's networking business. Peterson was selected as Brocade's vice president of global channels in November 2015, with bold plans to better leverage the company's channel more successfully.

"Well, it's definitely not a good sign for the channel," said one executive from a solution provider who partners with Brocade, who did not wish to be identified. "[Peterson is] a known player in the channel, so it's not a great sign for the future … I'm just waiting to hear more news. I think we're all just waiting to hear more news on what's going to happen to Brocade so we can adjust properly."

[Related: Cisco IoT Leader Jumps Ship to Microsoft]

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After only one year of being hired by Brocade, Peterson has jumped ship to TESSCO Technologies as its new senior vice president of sales. The Hunt Valley, MD.-based company both distributes and manufactures products for wireless networking, mobile infrastructure and the internet of things (IoT).

In an email to CRN, Peterson said he was excited to join TESSCO and leverage its partner community more strategically.

"We have a great opportunity to leverage the many talents we have on our team and to leverage our Partner Community more strategically as we move forward," said Peterson. "From IoT to mobile device accessories to Wi-Fi and backhaul, the opportunity in the wireless industry is enormous, and no other company is positioned to take advantage of that opportunity like TESSCO."

Peterson will be responsible for leading the company's sales team focusing on gaining share in the wireless industry.

Brocade did not immediately respond to CRN for comment on who will be replacing Peterson.

In September, TESSCO appointed Murray Wright as its President and CEO. Wright was the former CEO of IoT solution provider Zones, ranked No. 31 on CRN's Solution Provider 500 list. Before Zones, he spent several years at distribution giant Tech Data where Wright and Peterson worked side by side.

"I'm excited about rejoining forces with Murray," said Peterson. "It's a great company on the wireless and mobility segment with great customers and partners."

TESSCO touts itself as a value-added distributor, manufacturer and solutions provider, supplies more than 50,000 products from 400 manufacturers in mobile, wireless, IoT and wireless backhaul.

Peterson's departure comes during a time of uncertainly at Brocade as the network company is striving to find a buyer for its networking business.

Channel partners were eager last year to cash in on Brocade Communications' $1.2 billion acquisition of Ruckus Wireless, but Broadcom dampened their enthusiasm when it swooped in to buy Brocade. The chip maker revealed as the acquisition was announced that it would sell off Brocade's IP networking business, including Ruckus Wireless.

"There's little we can do at this point but wait," said the executive from the solution provider. "It isn't affecting sales or how we do business with Brocade yet, but the sooner we find out the future, the better."