New Websense Channel Chief Opens Up
I had the chance to talk with Websense’s recently appointed channel chief Matt Hynes, who’s taking the position amid fierce competition in the security market. Here’s what Hynes had to say about himself, the channel, and the timing of his appointment.
As we reported in January 2010, Websense channel veterans David Roberts and Geoff Haggart stepped down just days before the company’s partner conference. The timing was especially tricky, since the story broke ahead of the event. More recently, Wall Street seemed briefly worried about Websense’s 2010 financial expectations, though shares in the company were trading near a 52-week high as of Feb. 8.
Hynes was installed as part of what Websense is calling a “realigned” focus on worldwide channel sales.
Not surprisingly, Hynes is very positive on the timing. He was actually hired back in the Fall of ’09 as a “natural extension” of the already-started global initiative. Hynes says he started work at Websense a few days early just to be able to attend the partner conference and get some face time with Websense’s channel partners.
And his message to those worried about what Roberts and Haggarts’ exits might portend? Relax. “Change is always hard,” Hynes says.
Hynes has 20 years experience working with companies ranging from BBN Technologies to McAfee to, most recently, ArcSight. Looking ahead, he says that his focus in his first six months is going to be on expanding the market for Websense’s data leakage protection (DLP) product line.
Hynes also wants to increase the number of Websense resellers in America and around the world as part of that aforementioned realignment.
The mood across Websense’s partner base sounds mixed, according to a Jan. 22 ChannelWeb report. But Hynes says everything Websense launches has to take into account the company’s reliance on VARs and managed services providers. The final word on Hynes’ vision for the channel:
“I want our partners to make a lot of money,” Hynes says.