FireEye Loses SVP To Security Venture Capital Firm Trident Capital Cybersecurity

FireEye has lost another top executive, with the news that Ken Gonzalez, who was senior vice president of corporate development and global alliances, has left the company to take a role at Trident Capital Cybersecurity.

Gonzalez will serve as managing director at Trident Capital Cybersecurity, a $300 million cybersecurity venture firm based in San Mateo, Calif. Trident Capital Cybersecurity's investments include Attivo Networks, AlienVault, Bromium, Qualys and Solera Networks (acquired by Blue Coat).

Gonzalez had been at FireEye since January 2013 leading corporate development and global alliances, including the company's $1.1 billion acquisition of Mandiant in 2014. Gonzalez has also led corporate development at McAfee, helping the company prepare itself and ultimately be acquired by Intel for $7.7 billion (the company has since spun back out to McAfee). He has also held top roles at Avast Software and Siebel Systems.

[Related: Rubrik Hires Ex-FireEye CMO In Runup To Potential IPO]

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In a statement about the hire, Trident Capital Cybersecurity Managing Director Alberto Yepez said Gonzalez's experience around completing acquisitions – 23 in total in his career – and in alliances and OEM licensing will "become handy to help entrepreneurs grow their businesses" in the Trident portfolio.

"Ken brings the mind-set of corporate buyers of cybersecurity startups, excellent strategic insight and a global network of trusted channel relationships that will help scale our portfolio companies," Yepez said.

Trident Capital Cybersecurity said Gonzalez will focus on investments in cybersecurity around the Internet of Things, next-generation identity platforms, behavioral data analytics, privacy, secure payments and fraud protection. In a statement about his appointment, Gonzalez said the move to cybersecurity investment is a "natural progression" for his career.

"I have led teams that have made more than 20 successful cyber acquisitions in my career. Today, cyber is an excellent investment market and I wanted to be part of the next wave of cybersecurity investing," Gonzalez said. "I chose Trident Capital Cybersecurity because of its stellar cybersecurity investment record, its understanding of technology and because it is renowned for its connections in the cyber ecosystem. … The firm also pays close attention to helping entrepreneurs build their companies and is active on their boards. That's important to me," he said.

Gonzalez is the third top-level FireEye executive to leave the company this year, coming after the departure this month of CMO Kara Wilson and the February departure of CFO Michael Berry. Berry took a role as CFO of McAfee and Wilson took a role as CMO at Rubrik. FireEye also said in February that Executive Chairman Dave DeWalt had fully resigned from the company, a change the company said at the time was a "natural progression" of leadership after DeWalt stepped down as CEO the year prior.

A FireEye spokesperson said Gonzalez was a key piece in the company’s transformation over the past couple of years, especially when it came to acquisitions.

’Ken came to FireEye in the corporate development capacity and was instrumental in key acquisitions like Mandiant and iSight that gave FireEye a unique position in the security market. As our sales leadership transitioned, Ken stepped in to look after our partnering strategy. Bill Robbins assumed that role when he joined FireEye and after almost five years at FireEye Ken took a natural next step into the VC community. We wish him well in his new endeavors,’ the spokesperson said in an email to CRN.

Rick Grimaldi, chief strategy and security officer at FireEye partner K logix, Brookline, Mass., said he didn't expect much immediate impact from Gonzalez's departure, although said the long-term impact likely remains to be seen.

"I don’t think it has much of an immediate impact on our strategy in the near future," Grimaldi said in an email to CRN. "Longer term, [I'm] not sure, as I'm sure things will change on their end as a result of this."