Channel programs News
30 Notable IT Executive Moves: August 2020
August’s biggest IT executive moves were headlined by news that Nutanix’s founding CEO is retiring, but Cisco Systems, Dell Technologies, Hewlett Packard Enterprise and several other tech companies also had significant personnel changes.
Shakeups At HPE, Dell Technologies
The final full month of summer was rife with major executive moves in the IT industry, including big shakeups at Hewlett Packard Enterprise and Dell Technologies.
August also saw the coming and going of several top CEOs, which included the announcement that Nutanix co-founder and CEO Dheeraj Pandey plans to retire after 11 years with the company.
Other companies that saw big personnel changes include Poly, Magnitude Software, Avnet, Western Digital, Cisco Systems, Tibco Software and VMware.
What follows are 30 notable IT executive moves from August 2020.
Nutanix CEO Dheeraj Pandey is retiring from the company he co-founded 11 years ago and built into a $1.6 billion software powerhouse.
Pandey was one of the first innovators in hyperconverged infrastructure, starting his company in 2009 and quickly becoming one of the market leaders and a pioneer in hyperconverged infrastructure.
“Co-founding and leading Nutanix for the last 11 years has been the single most rewarding experience of my professional career. Guided by a vision of making IT infrastructure so simple that it becomes invisible, our team has built Nutanix into a leader in cloud software and a pioneer in hybrid cloud infrastructure solutions,” said Pandey in a statement.
A CEO search committee of the Nutanix board of directors is under way to find a replacement. The board will identify and interview candidates with the assistance of a leading global executive search firm. Pandey plans to retire as CEO upon the selection and appointment of a new CEO.
Dave Shull, a longtime telecom veteran who most recently served as president and CEO of TiVo, was tapped to lead unified communications and videoconferencing provider Poly as chairman and CEO.
Shull replaces Robert Hagerty, chairman of Poly’s board of directors and former CEO of Polycom from 1997 to 2010, who had been serving as Poly’s interim CEO since February when Joe Burton, the company’s president and CEO since 2016, stepped down.
Prior to TiVo, Shull was CEO of The Weather Channel for more than two years after being promoted from his role as group president of TV for the station. Before that, Shull held several roles, including executive vice president and chief commercial officer for Dish Network for more than six years.
Global electronics components distributor Avnet announced that CEO William “Bill” Amelio is stepping down and will be replaced by company executive Phil Gallagher in an interim capacity.
Amelio joined Avnet as CEO in July 2016. Prior to that, he was Lenovo’s CEO from late 2005 to early 2009. No reason was given for the departure of Amelio. However, Avnet Chairman Rodney Adkins, in a prepared statement, praised Amelio as a great asset during his time on the company’s board of directors and as the company’s CEO.
Gallagher had been serving as global president of Avnet’s electronic components business since April 2017. Prior to that time, he was the corporate officer and senior vice president and president of Americas sales and marketing at TTI, a specialist electronic component distributor. From 1997 to 2015, he served in various roles in different parts of the distributor, ending up heading Avnet Technology Solutions between 2009 and 2015.
Magnitude Software appointed former Eze Software CEO Jeffrey Shoreman as its new CEO, taking over from former leader Christopher Ney, who left the company earlier this year.
“Magnitude has fantastic people, counts the world’s leading enterprises as its customers, and provides technology that serves critical business needs,” said Shoreman in a statement. “Today’s data-driven enterprises outperform competitors by leveraging the power of their data to turn business insights into decisive action, and Magnitude is at the forefront of this movement. I believe we have a unique opportunity to create a truly differentiated company and a trusted partner to our enterprise clients.”
Shoreman was most recently CEO and president of Eze Software, which he sold to SS&C Technologies in 2018—a transaction that put him into the role as general manager.
Smart Global Holdings, which owns Penguin Computing, appointed former Micron Technology President Mark Adams as its new president and CEO, taking over from Ajay Shah, who will continue to serve as executive chairman on the company’s board.
“I am excited to be in a position to lead the Smart team as the company continues its growth and diversification strategy,” Adams said in a statement. “Smart has a long history of industry-leading specialty products, operational excellence, supply chain expertise and successes with some of the largest electronic systems OEMs, as well as with enterprise, government and university customers.”
Adams was most recently CEO of Lumileds, where he worked from 2017 to 2019. Prior to that, he was president of Micron Technology, where he worked from 2006 to 2016.
Corelight appointed former Chief Product Officer Brian Dye as its new CEO, taking over from co-founder Gregory Bell, who was moved to the role as chief strategy officer.
The company also appointed former Imperva CEO Michele Bettencourt to the company’s board of directors, which is also adding Dye with his new appointment.
“We are excited for the future of Corelight with Brian, Michele and Greg’s combined leadership,” said Stephen Herrod, Corelight board member, in a statement. “This triple threat of deep technology expertise, corporate growth experience and passion for the open-source community will fuel the company’s continued growth and leadership in the network detection and response market.”
Buffalo Americas appointed Arata Nakamura as the company’s new CEO.
Nakamura has been with Buffalo for more than 25 years and had previously served as a director and board member for the company in the Netherlands and Dubai. He was most recently COO of Buffalo Americas before becoming CEO.
The company’s former CEO, Daisuke Maki, will continue to serve as the director of Buffalo Americas and as a board member of Buffalo to support the Americas operation.
Simeio Solutions, a provider of identity and access management software, appointed former IBM executive Chris Schueler as its new CEO, taking over from founding leader Herman Vimadalal, who will continue to serve as the company’s board chairman.
Schueler was most recently senior vice president of security services at Trustwave. Prior to that, he spent 10 years at IBM, where he most recently served as vice president of global managed development and operations DevOps. He also served in the U.S. Army for 12 years, most recently acting as director of global security operations.
“Chris’ leadership, passion and ability to execute rapid growth with a customer-centric approach was evident from the start of our selection process. His game-changing methods and track record at Trustwave demonstrate he has the insight and leadership to execute through market transitions,” said Vimadalal in a statement. “Chris’ strong background in cybersecurity, managed services and a proven history of accelerating emerging companies will drive Simeio towards its goals at a time when the company is expanding its partnerships and solutions,” he added.
Western Digital President and COO Mike Cordano stepped down and left the company to start Prime Impact Acquisition I, a blank check company targeting a data-centric company, with former fellow Western Digital executive Mark Long.
Cordano had served as president and COO of Western Digital for nearly five years. Prior to that, he was president of HGST, a Western Digital brand, where he worked for more than six years.
Before Western Digital, Cordano was co-founder and CEO of a startup called Fabrik that was acquired by Western Digital’s HGST brand in 2009.
Kelly A. Kramer
Cisco Systems announced that CFO and Executive Vice President Kelly A. Kramer is retiring but will continue to serve in that role until a replacement is found.
Kramer has been with Cisco since 2012, when she was hired as senior vice president of corporate finance. Before she was named CFO in 2015, Kramer had been senior vice president of business technology and operations finance.
Prior to Cisco, she was vice president and CFO for GE Healthcare’s Healthcare Systems business. She had spent a total of 20 years at General Electric, and other roles included CFO of GE Healthcare Biosciences.
StorCentric appointed former Brocade executive Rob Eggers as its new CFO.
“This is indeed a critical time in the storage industry, as so many emerging trends and market demands are colliding and forcing organizations to reassess data management workflows and data security risks,” said Eggers in a statement. “I’m extremely proud to be joining StorCentric, an incredible team of passionate and talented individuals, from every corner of the company.”
Eggers previously spent 18 years at Brocade, where he served in a variety of senior financial management roles, including vice president of finance.
Marilou van Doorn
Leaseweb Global appointed Marilou van Doorn as its new COO.
Van Doorn was previously Leaseweb’s operations director for the Netherlands. Prior to that, she was global operations director for fintech company Basebase. Before that, he worked for Wakoopa for more than six years, having served as COO and head of product and IT.
“I am delighted to welcome Marilou into her next position with Leaseweb,” said Con Zwinkels, CEO at Leaseweb Global, in a statement. “She has been an extremely valuable asset to the company over the past year, successfully streamlining the cross-departmental processes, increasing the operational quality and efficiency, and working towards a data-driven operation. As the demand for hybrid cloud grows exponentially, her expertise will be invaluable as we expand operations into this area.”
Hewlett Packard Enterprise North America Managing Director Dan Belanger, a highly respected 30-year HPE sales leader who boosted the company’s U.S. partner offensive, unexpectedly stepped down and is being replaced by Worldwide Channel Chief Paul Hunter.
Belanger, who came to HPE as a Compaq global sales leader in 2002, had headed up HPE’s North America business for the last three years. That entailed full profit and loss responsibility, overseeing 3,500 employees. Among Belanger’s achievements are that he was the first North America leader in five years to overperform on the top and bottom line and achieve double-digit growth in key product categories.
“With over 25 years of experience at the company, Paul has consistently demonstrated a keen awareness of customer needs, effective leadership skills, and the drive to push for better,” said HPE Chief Sales Officer Heiko Meyer in a blog post announcing the changing of the guard. “Most recently, he served as the worldwide head of partner sales, exemplifying our culture and focus on delivering our edge-to-cloud platform strategy.”
Adaptiv Networks appointed Frederick Parent as its chief technology officer.
Parent is the co-founder of Victrix and ELFIQ Networks, where he served as CTO for 16 years. He also worked at IBM and Bell Canada in the past.
“Frederick brings considerable experience and expertise and will enable rapid integration and continuity for our recent acquisition of ELFIQ Networks, as well as a strong strategic path forward,” Bernard Breton, CEO of Adaptiv Networks, said in a statement. “His success in developing market-leading edge networking solutions is an ideal complement to Adaptiv’s cloud-native SD-WAN products.”
Dell Technologies North America President John Byrne, the fiery channel advocate who as the head of global channels brought together the two disparate Dell and EMC channel businesses, is now also overseeing Dell’s North America channel.
The move to expand Byrne’s purview comes as Dell named Rola Dagher as its new global channel chief and rearchitected its channel sales structure. Dagher replaces Joyce Mullen, the well-respected channel veteran who officially departed the company in August.
Dell said that Byrne—who created the first combined Dell EMC partner program with double-digit sales growth during his 15-month channel tenure from September 2016 to November 2017— is now overseeing the North America channel as part of a move to align channel sales to Dell’s respective worldwide sales organizations.
Hewlett Packard Enterprise Vice President of Worldwide Distribution George Hope was named interim HPE worldwide channel chief as HPE continues to look for someone to fill the role permanently.
Hope—a 22-year channel veteran with enterprise sales experience that includes storage stalwart EMC and hyperconverged powerhouse SimpliVity—takes the helm in the wake of the appointment of former HPE Worldwide Channel Chief Paul Hunter as the new managing director of HPE North America.
“George is in a great position because he has been a vital part of all the planning for the future and the decisions we are making to continue to evolve with our partners so there will be no interruption with the pace and agility with which we move and evolve with you together,” Hunter told partners.
Dell Technologies appointed former Cisco Systems executive Rola Dagher as its new global channel chief, replacing Joyce Mullen, who departed in August.
Dagher comes back to Dell after serving three years as president of Cisco in Canada. Prior to Cisco, she held sales and leadership roles in Dell’s enterprise segment and Infrastructure Solutions Group, including vice president and general manager of ISG. She will lead Dell Technologies’ global channel partner strategy, vision, enablement, program design and partner experience.
“I will bring a different culture to the partner ecosystem that is based on purpose-first,” said Dagher in an interview with CRN. “Today, it’s all about stakeholders, and our partner ecosystem is the biggest stakeholder for us. I want to bring purpose. I want to bring impact. I want to bring empowerment because once you empower your partners and once you inspire them, you get out of their way to let them go out and make a huge impact through Dell Technologies.”
Lemongrass, an SAP on Amazon Web Services solution provider, appointed Virtustream co-founder Vince Lubsey as chief technology officer.
Lubsey was previously co-founder and executive vice president of product management and solution architecture at Virtustream. Before that, he was senior manager in the enterprise architecture and SAP consulting practices at Adjoined Consulting—a role he continued after Capgemini acquired Adjoined.
“Vince’s focus at Lemongrass will be on operationalizing and scaling Lemongrass’s market-leading technology and processes, driving enterprise value by growing top-line revenue and improving margins, and helping our customers use automation and intelligence to unlock innovation while running their SAP applications on AWS,” said Mike Rosenbloom, CEO at Lemongrass, in a statement. “Vince is an expert in cloud technology, product management and enterprise architecture. Our customers will benefit significantly from his experience and leadership.”
Wendell Brooks left Intel as the president of Intel Capital, the chipmaker’s venture capital arm.
Anthony Lin, the head of mergers, acquisitions and international investments, is taking over Brooks’ role on an interim capacity, Intel told TechCrunch.
Brooks had been at Intel Capital since 2014. Before that, he was managing director at Allen & Company and managing director at Citi Bank.
Camillo Speroni, who oversaw Oracle’s channel organization and tech alliances for the last six years, announced that he is leaving the company.
Speroni was approaching his six-year anniversary with the tech giant, a tenure as vice president for worldwide strategic alliances he characterized as “the honor of my career.”
Before coming to Oracle in December 2014, Speroni worked for eight years at Novell, and then three in channel leadership positions at CA Technologies. Under his charge, Oracle implemented a massive revamp of its PartnerNetwork channel program that went into effect at the end of last year.
VMware channel executive Shawn Toldo was among an undisclosed number of employees who were laid off in August, the company confirmed to CRN.
Toldo was most recently vice president of VMware’s worldwide partner organization for cloud and services go-to-market, according to LinkedIn. He had been with VMware for four years and, prior to that, worked at Microsoft for more than 11 years.
Toldo’s departure follows the recent departures of VMware’s global channel leader, Jenni Flinders, and Dell Technologies global channel chief Joyce Mullen, whose last day was Aug. 14.
Amid a new round of layoffs, longtime Dell Technologies channel sales and marketing executive Paul Shaffer left the company after 21 years. Shaffer’s departure came at the same time as the departure of Dell’s global channel chief, Joyce Mullen, who was also a 21-year Dell veteran.
“A very long chapter of my life and career has closed as I finished my last day at Dell Technologies,” said Shaffer in a LinkedIn post. “I wanted to thank my current channel sales team and my NSP [national solution provider] partners for the last eight years. No doubt about it, the best eight years of my career.”
Shaffer was vice president of sales, global commercial channels at Dell EMC, responsible for teams managing over $2 billion in business-to-business and business-to-consumer product lines, according to his bio. He was also head of North America field sales for large national solution providers such as PCM, Insight Enterprises, SHI and Softchoice.
Sigfox U.S.A. appointed Hussain Suleman as vice president of sales.
“As COVID-19 changed the way we work, organizations have looked to technology to solve many of the issues brought on by the pandemic,” said Suleman in a statement. “As we continue to move forward, IoT will be critical to enabling the more connected world required to help us navigate future global disruptions more successfully. I am thrilled to be at the forefront of this movement and to provide our customers with the key insights that the Sigfox 0G network can provide.”
Suleman was previously director of business development at Sigfox U.S.A. Prior to that, he was country director for southern and eastern Africa for Sigfox Group, owner of Sigfox U.S.A.
Tibco Software has hired channel veteran Tony Beller to be the software integration and business analytics company’s new channel chief.
Beller, who has held channel management posts at Anaplan, ServiceNow and Salesforce, takes over as senior vice president, worldwide partner ecosystems and OEM sales from Jason Johns, who left in May to become senior vice president of global alliances and channels at Software AG.
“We’re committed to developing a unique experience for our partners as we jointly serve the market. The end goal of our partner program is to drive simplicity, predictability, and profitability as we deliver business value via software and services to our customers,” said Scott Roza, Tibco president and global head of customer operations, in a statement. “The Tibco team is honored to have Tony join our pursuit of building a larger and more capable partner ecosystem. I’m confident that Tony’s extensive experience will enhance all that we do with our existing and future network.”
William Madison, Masergy’s one-time channel leader of more than seven years, returned to his role as vice president of alliances, partnerships, distributors and international markets after a stint at unified communications giant Avaya.
Madison since January had served as vice president of North America cloud sales, channel, for Avaya. He called his experience with Avaya “rewarding” and is proud of his work with Avaya Cloud Office but called Masergy “home.”
Prior to his appointment at Avaya, Madison served as director of global channels for Masergy for more than seven years, as well as vice president of Masergy’s global channel development program for two years and before that, vice president of Masergy’s strategic partner program.
Intellisys, a ScanSource company, made two promotions: Brandon Smith to the role of senior vice president of national sales and Tracy Hali to the role of vice president of sales operations.
Smith, who will be responsible for Intelisys’ sales organization, was previously vice president of partner sales and business development. Hali, who will manage day-to-day operations for support and order management functions, was previously senior director of order management.
“Brandon and Tracy have been great leaders at Intelisys, and both have a passion for excellence and helping others succeed,” said Mark Morgan, president of Intelisys, in a statement. “I’m confident in the experience and the breadth of knowledge they will bring to their respective roles, and I’m excited about the impact they will have on the sales organization.”
Performive, formerly known as Total Server Solutions, announced three appointments: Mark Mercado as vice president of channel sales, Danielle Walter as vice president of marketing and Ryan Howard as director of channel sales.
Mercado was previously vice president of channel sales at INAP, formerly known as SingleHop, where he worked for nearly seven years. Walter also previously worked at INAP and, before that, was at Rackspace. Howard was also previously at INAP and served a stint at Ntirety before going to Performive.
“The growth to date within [Performive] has been extraordinary given we are just establishing our marketing presence and a premier channel program,” said Gary Simat, co-founder and CEO of Performive, in a statement. “We are prioritizing our partner relationships and clarifying our strength of positioning in the market to continue our momentum—even in a post-COVID era. These hires are experts within their field and will enable exponential growth.”
KELA hired cybersecurity veteran Ayesha Prakash to help the threat intelligence vendor approach the channel in a more structured, formalized manner.
The Tel Aviv, Israel-based company has tasked Prakash with doubling the size of KELA’s partner community and increasing the share of business flowing through the channel from 20 percent today to 50 percent a year from now, according to the company. Prakash started as KELA’s vice president of global channels and alliances Aug. 18.
Prakash was most recently chief revenue officer at Terbium Labs. Prior to that, she was head of global channels and partnerships at Flashpoint and director of channel sales at Invincea.
SignalWire, a startup specializing in virtual office and videoconferencing technology, brought on Ezra Hookano as the company’s new vice president of global channels and business development.
Hookano is no stranger to helping companies and startups build out their channel programs. His work has spanned across seven startups, including Barracuda Networks, Drobo, Fusion-IO and Exablox. Hookano has helped two companies go public and had a hand in several acquisitions.
Hookano comes to SignalWire after most recently serving as vice president of channel for Barracuda Networks for the last four years.
Nerdio appointed former Microsoft executive Andy Lees to its board of directors.
In Lee’s 23 years at Microsoft, he served in various sales and marketing roles at the company’s U.K. subsidiary and then went on to serve as a corporate vice president at Microsoft’s U.S. headquarters, leading the company’s enterprise push.
“As a Microsoft veteran having spent over two decades with the company, I am thrilled to join the Board of Directors at Nerdio, a leading, trusted Microsoft partner,” said Lees in a statement. “With businesses worldwide rethinking their technology stack to adapt to the growing remote workforce, it is an exciting time to join Nerdio as they continue to rapidly grow their partner ecosystem as well as their internal team. They are creating such a noticeable and positive impact on businesses across the globe by streamlining the shift to cloud.”