Datto's extensive partner network had a myriad of reactions to the popular leader's announcement he's leaving the C-suite.

Kris Blackmon, Head of Channel Communities

October 24, 2018

10 Slides

Austin McChord, who founded Datto 11 years ago and has been at the helm ever since, resigned his position as CEO Tuesday. Extremely popular among his channel partners, McChord’s decision has inspired a range of reactions from Datto’s managed service provider (MSP) community, from happy well-wishes to wariness about what will happen next.

“Austin had an amazing vision of partnership with MSPs,” said Jason Dittman, president of MSP MicroAge Regina. “We will be keeping a very watchful eye to ensure that vision continues.”

A year ago, backup and disaster recovery (BDR) provider Datto merged with Autotask, which provides IT management solutions, in a blockbuster deal we don’t often see in the channel. Together, they were acquired by Vista Equity Partners in a $1.5 billion deal. Not bad for someone who started his company in his parents’ basement. To many in the industry, his exit post-acquisition is hardly a shock.

“I can’t say I’m surprised,” said C.J. Ezell, founder of MSP PointClear Networks. “This happens to every young CEO whenever [venture capital] gets involved. Vision always gives way to profits.”

Whatever McChord’s reasons for leaving the c-suite, all the Datto partners we talked with for this article spoke of the visionary founder with utmost respect. It’s clear he’ll be missed.

“Austin has led Datto to be a backbone company in our industry,” said Heinan Landa, president & CEO of MSP Optimal Networks. “I hope his decision paves the way for even more opportunities for them.”

To read more partner reactions, click through our slide show.

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About the Author(s)

Kris Blackmon

Head of Channel Communities, Zift Solutions

Kris Blackmon is head of channel communities at Zift Solutions. She previously worked as chief channel officer at JS Group, and as senior content director at Informa Tech and project director of the MSP 501er Community. Blackmon is chair of CompTIA's Channel Development Advisory Council and operates KB Consulting. You may follow her on LinkedIn and @zift on X.

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