CRN Exclusive: ForeScout Names Former FireMon Exec As New Worldwide Channel Chief

ForeScout Technologies has nabbed a partner favorite as its new top channel exec, announcing on Thursday the addition of Todd DeBell as vice president of worldwide channel sales.

DeBell comes to the Campbell, Calif.-based ForeScout from FireMon, where he was vice president of worldwide channel sales and distribution until the end of June. He officially started at ForeScout on July 11.

DeBell said he decided to move to ForeScout because of the "huge opportunity" he sees for partners around Internet of Things security. ForeScout provides an agent-less visibility and enforcement security solution for all connected devices on a company's network. DeBell said ForeScout is in a "strong position" to capitalize on that market need.

[Related: Sources: Firemon Executive Exodus Sees CEO, CTO And CISO Departures]

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"I'm excited to be here," DeBell said. "The opportunity is significant and the partners are just really, really excited about what we have ahead of us."

CEO Michael DeCesare said DeBell is a key addition to continue the "strong momentum" ForeScout is seeing around its channel business. ForeScout has been on a strong growth path in recent months, with its revenue jumping 77 percent year-over-year to $125 million in 2015, and landing $76 million in funding in January, putting the company's market valuation at more than $1 billion. DeBell will be responsible for growing ForeScout's global channel business as well as its budding business through distribution, DeCesare said.

"We're really excited. He's a big, big upgrade and add for us in an important area of the business to execute against," the CEO said. "We're really excited to have him on board."

DeBell is ForeScout's third channel chief this year, replacing most recent channel chief Tom Evans, who resigned from the company in April to take a sales and channel leadership role at business process application company K2 Software. His departure came on the heels of the exit of channel chief Devin Archer in January, who left to take a role as head of channels for Warren, N.J.-based risk management and cyber threat intelligence vendor Prevalent.

DeCesare said ForeScout had sought a channel chief with the operational expertise to build a strong and efficient partner ecosystem, as well as a leader that would be a good cultural fit with the company. He said ForeScout had been targeting DeBell for "quite some time," pointing to the strong partner programs he put in place at FireMon as examples.

"He's an absolute star. I think he will advance us very quickly," DeCesare said. "I hope as he comes on board that we get an increasingly high percentage of our business driven by the change, where the value is driven with the channel," he said.

Partners who knew DeBell from his time at FireMon said the addition was a great move for ForeScout. They said DeBell is a "great leader" and has "built a great program" at FireMon.

"Todd is great. This is a smart move for ForeScout and Todd…I look forward to working with him again," said the executive of a solution provider that partners with both companies, who did not want to be named.

DeBell said his first priority is to look at the partner program ForeScout already has in place and "make the necessary changes to adapt to the partner space we have" to make the company as attractive to partners as possible. That will include making investments in emerging markets, professional services delivery and partner enablement, he said.

"ForeScout is in a strong position now…I think what will set us apart is the investment in the channel," DeBell said.

"I think we're primed for a big growth spurt if we can get more partners engaged and trained to tell the story. I think our growth trajectory…on the partner side is going to be significant in the next three to five years," he said. "I'm really excited about the opportunity."