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January 10, 2023
Frank Rauch, the architect of channel programs at HPE, VMware and Check Point, will lead worldwide partner efforts for secure access service edge (SASE) provider Cato Networks.
Rauch started his new position of global channel chief last week, almost a month after leaving his position as Check Point Software Technologies’ head of worldwide channel sales. He did not confirm his destination at the time, but reports indicated that he would join an emerging pre-IPO player in the communications and technology industry.
Cato Networks’ Frank Rauch
That turned out to be the fast-growing centaur Cato, whose technology platform Rauch said he found intriguing. Rauch, whose previous employers have specialized in networking, SD-WAN, cybersecurity and cloud, said he saw in Cato a convergence of those three technologies. Cato has earned the reputation of one of the industry’s first pure SASE players, whose cloud-based platform combines advanced cybersecurity and networking features.
“The cloud is the enterprise’s present and future, appliances are its past. Forward-thinking channel partners know their future lies in the cloud, but they need the right platform and technology partner to profit from the cloud. After doing my due diligence, I found Cato to be that partner,” Rauch said.
Cato Networks’ Alon Alter
For Cato, Rauch brings deep relationships with C-level leadership at some of the IT channel’s largest partners, distributors and vendors. He told Channel Futures that he and Cato will explore how to put those relationships to good use. He added that he looks forward to engaging with Cato’s growing technology advisor (agent) channel, a route to market that he has been learning more about in recent years.
“My intention is to be accretive in everything we do. To be able to create new business and not to displace anybody,” Rauch said in an interview with Channel Futures.
Cato chief revenue officer Alon Alter welcomed Rauch to the company.
We recently compiled a list of 20 top SD-WAN providers offering products and services via channel partners.
“SASE is the future of enterprise networking and security,” Alter said. “With the Cato SASE Cloud, partners can get to market quickly with new reoccurring revenue streams, delivering differentiated converged enterprise networking and security capabilities and value-added support services.”
Rauch’s career in technology started in direct sales in collaboration with partners. He worked at HP from 2003 to 2012, following HP’s acquisition of Compaq. He ultimately took the lead for HP’s Americas enterprise channel at the end of his tenure at HP. From there he served as the vice president of VMware’s Americas partner organization. He worked at Check Point (which Cato co-founder Shlomo Kramer also co-founded) from 2019 to this month.
Cato announced several other appointments to its channel team. They specifically address the growth of the vendor’s service provider channel. For example, service providers such as KDDI and Windstream Enterprise.
Robert Holley, formerly Versa Networks’ senior sales director, joined Cato in December as associate vice president of VAR, resellers and service providers, Americas. Shane Hallen, formerly a strategic sales manager for service providers at Cisco Meraki, has also recently joined Cato. He is working as director of service provider sales for the Americas. Paolo Maestripieri, an alumnus of ThousandEyes, Zscaler, Juniper Networks and Global Crossing, will serve as director of EMEA service provider sales.
In addition, Cato promoted channel sales directors Ron Hamlett and Mark Draper. Hamlett will serve as associate vice president of technology services distributors and agents. Draper’s role is area vice president of EMEA channel sales.
Rauch explained why he chose Cato and how he views the vendor’s different partner routes to market. He also touched on his overall view of the partner landscape and the idea of ecosystems.
Scroll through the slideshow above to read Rauch’s comments.
Senior News Editor, Channel Futures
James Anderson is a news editor for Channel Futures. He interned with Informa while working toward his degree in journalism from Arizona State University, then joined the company after graduating. He writes about SD-WAN, telecom and cablecos, technology services distributors and carriers. He has served as a moderator for multiple panels at Channel Partners events.
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