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CyCognito Snags Infoblox’s Lori Cornmesser To Fuel Channel

Cornmesser plans to build CyCognito’s first-ever formal partner program and increase the share of business flowing through the cybersecurity startup’s channel from 63 percent today to 95 percent a year from now.

CyCognito is bringing on longtime Infoblox and Ixia partner leader Lori Cornmesser to serve as the external attack surface management vendor’s first-ever channel chief.

Cornmesser will start April 12 as vice president of worldwide channel sales, and will look to increase the share of business flowing through the Palo Alto, Calif.-based cybersecurity startup’s channel from 63 percent today to 95 percent a year from now. CyCognito has tasked Cornmesser with bringing more structure to the 100 channel relationships the firm has today by building out a formal partner program.

“Partners want to work with a company who’s innovative and disruptive,” Cornmesser told CRN. “CyCognito is solving one of the most fundamental business problems in cybersecurity.”

[Related: CRN Exclusive: Former Ixia Channel Chief Lori Cornmesser Jumps To Network Identity Player Infoblox]

Cornmesser most recently spent nearly three years as Infoblox’s global channel chief, and prior to that spent 4.5 years leading global channels at Ixia, where she also built out their first-ever partner program. CyCognito has already established relationships with solution providers like Wipro and Optiv, but Cornmesser said those exist outside a formal program with rules of engagement and clear swim lanes.

Before rolling out a formal partner program, Cornmesser said she plans to listen to CyCognito’s existing solution providers to understand where they’re seeing success today and how those relationships can be deepened or strengthened. Cornmesser is focused on making CyCognito’s inaugural partner program simple and profitable so that the channel can help drive market penetration and new logo acquisition.

At CyCognito, Cornmesser is looking to create a global footprint by onboarding partners for the first time in Latin America as well as strengthening the company’s reach in Europe and Asia. CyCognito’s partner base today is made up of regional VARs, national VARs, global systems integrators and MSSPs focused on serving Fortune 2000 customers, according to Cornmesser.

Cornmesser is looking to hire between three and five channel account managers (CAMs) over the next year to help CyCognito provide good coverage in the United States, Europe and Asia. CyCognito today has just one person responsible for channel programs, channel account management and marketing, but is committed to investing more in the channel going forward to enhance their reach and coverage.

“They’re all-in on the channel,” Cornmesser said. “They believe the channel is the best way to market the company.”

Solution providers can take advantage of CyCognito to help customers improve their penetration testing programs and consolidate the number of vendors they’re using, Cornmesser said. CyCognito offers vulnerability scanning, penetration testing, attack surface management and security management, and can help with information visualization, risk analysis, global asset recovery, and prioritization.

CyCognito competes most frequently against RiskIQ and Expanse, which was acquired by Palo Alto Networks in December for $800 million, and Cornmesser said the company has been able to differentiate from its rivals thanks to the breadth of its capabilities. “It’s a great market opportunity, and CyCognito is solving a real business problem,” Cornmesser said.

From a metrics standpoint, Cornmesser said she’s going to be most closely tracking new logo acquisition and partner-generated pipeline. Cornmesser anticipates CyCognito’s new partner program will reward solution providers for bringing more business to the company through incentives like deal registration.

“I’m super excited about this next journey, and I look forward to stepping into this more,” Cornmesser said.

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