Former Cisco Exec Steve Benvenuto Tapped To Lead Cradlepoint Channel

‘You can’t keep great talent on the bench for long,’ says one longtime channel partner executive on Benvenuto’s new post leading the Americas channel at Cradlepoint.


Longtime Cisco channel leader Steve Benvenuto is joining wireless edge networking specialist Cradlepoint as its Americas channel chief.

Benvenuto took to LinkedIn Friday to share the news that he has accepted the position of vice president of partner sales, Americas, for channel-led Cradlepoint.

“I’m personally thrilled to have [Benvenuto] back in the game so quickly,” said Kent MacDonald, senior vice president of strategic alliances for Long View Systems, a Calgary, Alberta-based solution provider. MacDonald worked with Benvenuto when the tech veteran was at Cisco, and the two have become good friends through the years, he said.

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“You can’t keep great talent on the bench for long. With [Benvenuto] joining Cradlepoint, they have recruited a trusted and respected friend and advocate of the IT channel community. Congrats to both [Benvenuto] and Cradlepoint.”

[Related: Cisco Security Channel Vet Steve Benvenuto Takes Early Retirement Deal]

The longtime Cisco channel leader in October took Cisco up on the early retirement packages the tech giant was doling out to some of its executives, ending his 21-year tenure with the company. Benvenuto most recently served as senior director, global security partner sales for Cisco for the past four years. Prior to that, he served as senior director, sales and business development of Cisco‘s Cloud Partner Transformation unit for six years. Before that, he spent nine years as senior director, sales and business development for Cisco’s Global Partner Programs. Benvenuto joined Cisco in 1991 as senior director, sales and business development of emerging and IoT technologies.

Benvenuto’s focus at Cradlepoint will be on empowering solution providers with next-generation connectivity options such as LTE and 5G for mobile, branch and emerging IoT use cases, the executive said in his LinkedIn post on his new appointment.

“Hot market, strong growth, great company culture … and MOST importantly, an awesome opportunity for partners to grow and profit. I look forward to joining, and expanding, an already outstanding Americas partner team as we scale the business with our partners,” Benvenuto said.

Swedish telecom equipment giant Ericsson in November acquired Cradlepoint for $1.1 billion. Under the terms of the deal, Cradlepoint is a fully owned subsidiary of Ericsson, landing in the company’s Business Area Technologies and New Businesses unit. Cradlepoint will continue to operate under its existing brand, the companies said.