Gigamon Taps Former Riverbed Channel Exec Michelle Hodges As New Channel Leader

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Network visibility specialist Gigamon has brought on Michelle Hodges as its new vice president of worldwide partner sales.

A channel veteran, Hodges has spent the past two decades supporting solution providers. Hodges most recently served as vice president of global channel for Riverbed Technology. Before that, she worked as vice president for global channels for Apptio, and at the director-level for Intel, VMware, SAP, and Microsoft's indirect channel organizations.

Hodges is replacing Barbara Spicek, Gigamon's former VP of worldwide channels who has since moved on to lead the channel for Veritas Technologies.

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In her new role, Hodges wants to motive and incent the channel to work with Gigamon on net-new security opportunities and joint-professional services offerings, she told CRN. Gigamon has historically had a strong channel in the networking space, and now, Hodges wants partners to turn their attention to security.

"There's already a fantastic foundation with the program and partnerships, and I really want to build on that and help them grow into the security channel," Hodges said.

Gigamon, founded in 2004, makes network and traffic visibility tools for both physical and virtualized networks. The Santa Clara, Calif.-based company last year was acquired by private equity player Elliot Management for $1.6 billion.

Gigamon today does more than 95 percent of its business through the channel. The company in 2015 formalized its partner program, and today has about 450 partners in its Silver, Gold, Platinum levels of the program worldwide with another 400 at the registered level.

Hodges said she will be meeting with the Gigamon channel teams and the partner community — IT distributors, system integrators, VARs, and solution providers — to learn more about what the channel needs to be successful in security with their end customers.

She also plans on targeting the MSP community. "I think there's a longer-term opportunity to help these companies mine their customer bases as well," Hodges said. 'It's all about going deeper into the security business and adding more value around those solutions and services."

And Hodges wants all partners to tap into their existing customer bases because about 60 percent of Gigamon customers come back for more, she said.

"There's a phenomenal revenue opportunity," she said. "There's about a 7x opportunity around additional licenses and services for the channel partner, so it's super sticky and scalable from a services perspective."

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