New FalconStor CEO Seeks Cloud Storage Partners
Jim McNiel sounds remarkably poised considering the storm he’s faced in recent months. As the new CEO of FalconStor Software, McNiel has had to ensure partners and customers that the storage company remains stable and innovative following the surprise departure of former CEO ReiJane Huai in September 2010. (Huai left amid a payment probe.) Much of McNiel’s 2011 strategy for FalconStor involves cloud computing, service-oriented data protection and channel partners.
In the TalkinCloud FastChat Video, McNiel describes public cloud and private cloud opportunities for FalconStor’s storage partners. But the video captures only part of the story. A transformation of sorts seems to be taking place within the halls of FalconStor’s Long Island headquarters. It includes new hires (Symantec veteran John Turner joined as VP of North American sales earlier this month); recent promotions (VP Brendan Kinkade now leads channel partnerships and global alliances); and a more intense focus on channel partners.
To understand the total FalconStor strategy check out The VAR Guy’s coverage here. And keep an eye on FalconStor’s partner program in late January and March 2011. It sounds like the company will give partners a group hug — more than once — over the next few months. Plus, FalconStor will also spend extensive time at the VMware Partner Exchange 2011 conference (Feb. 8-11, Orland0). The reason: FalconStor has quietly recruited about 25 VMware partners into the FalconStor channel program. Channel partners can earn $7 in FalconStor-oriented profits for every $1 in VMware-oriented profits they generate, McNiel estimates.
Still, FalconStor faces its share of challenges. The 500-person company still awaits a conclusion to the payment probe involving former CEO Huai. Plus, FalconStor doesn’t have much mind share within the cloud storage industry — which is currently dominated by big titans like Amazon Simple Storage Service and channel-friendly companies like Asigra. Plus, nimble upstarts like Doyenz and Intronis have rapidly recruited VARs and MSPs seeking business continuity and online backup solutions, respectively.
All that said, FalconStor typically doesn’t appeal to super-small resellers. Instead, the company has traditionally worked with large OEMs, sophisticated integrators and a growing number of VMware partners.