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Sources: Verizon Tightens Channel Management Team Following XO Integration

Verizon is consolidating its channel leadership team and cut staff from both Verizon and XO channel programs following the close of its XO Communications acquisition, sources told CRN.

Verizon is in the process of consolidating its channel leadership team now that the acquisition of XO Communications has closed.

Sources told CRN that the telecom giant had made staff cuts to both the existing Verizon and XO channel management organizations as Verizon works to remove redundant positions.

"[Verizon] let go of some talented people, and some tenured folks," according to one Verizon and XO partner that requested anonymity.

[Related: 10 Takeaways From Verizon's 'State Of The Market: Internet Of Things 2017']

"As part of our ongoing XO integration and in response to input from our partners, we are re-organizing our channel team. Our partners are aware of any changes that impact them directly," Kevin King, director of corporate communications for Verizon Enterprise Solutions, told CRN. "Our focus remains building a channel program that works best for our partners and helps them sell and deliver our network, business communications and security services to their clients."

While the layoffs have affected both XO and Verizon executives, another Verizon partner that asked not to be named said that some members of XO's indirect sales team would be playing a "bigger role" in the combined channel program, a silver lining, according to the partner.

The Verizon and XO partner said that despite seeing channel executive changes coming from both the XO and Verizon channel groups, much of XO's dedicated channel account managers and back office support had been let go.

"[This] leaves a huge gap for us because of the customer base we have with XO," the partner explained.

Regarding future channel leadership changes, solution providers agreed there would most likely be more to come in the near term as Verizon continues its post-acquisition integration.

Since closing the $1.8 billion acquisition of XO Communications in February, Verizon has been hard at work integrating the two separate partner programs.

This week, Joe Chuisano, director of channels for Verizon Business Markets since July, talked to CRN about the coming together of the Verizon and XO channel programs.

"As the Verizon Partner Program has come together with Verizon Business Markets and as we brought XO in, we are creating one program that brings together the best of the [Verizon Partner Program] and the XO program all under one umbrella," Chuisano said.

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