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Turbonomic COO On Accelerating Cloud Growth With Microsoft And AWS, And 'Stacking The Deck' With New Channel SVP Chris Sullivan

Mark Thurmond spoke with CRN about the channel's role in Turbonomic's rapid growth in the last year and the significant revenue opportunities for partners in 2018.

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Stacking The Deck

Turbonomic COO Mark Thurmond likes the way things are going. Growth is accelerating more customers use Turbonomic to optimize and automate workloads across the data center, private, hybrid and public clouds. Now, the company has made another blockbuster hire, bringing on Christopher Sullivan as senior vice president of global alliances and channels.

The channel, Thurmond said, is becoming more adept at realizing opportunities and driving growth in an increasingly public cloud-oriented world. Sullivan is tasked with expanding Turbonomic's channel globally while Jennifer Heard, the 22-year Microsoft veteran hired as channel chief less than a year ago, will focus exclusively on driving relationships and growth with Microsoft and AWS.

"This was a chance for Turbonomic to stack the deck with Chris and Jennifer Heard," Thurmond said. Heard "is going to be focused strictly on cloud partnerships because we're seeing such adoption with Microsoft and with AWS."

Partner recruitment will be among Sullivan's most important tasks, Thurmond said. "We're going to continue to aggressively recruit now that Chris is on board. We expect to recruit at a steady pace. We're up over 300 partners today, and we're going to continue to recruit and build out globally. We're going to increase our channel presence in EMEA and APAC significantly. That's a big, big focus for Chris."

What follows is an edited excerpt of Thurmond's conversation with CRN.

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