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March 7, 2023
Cybersecurity firm Check Point Software Technologies has appointed Francisco Criado as vice president of its global partner ecosystem organization.
He replaces Frank Rauch who served more than four years as Check Point’s head of worldwide channel sales. Rauch recently took a job as channel leader at Cato Networks.
Rupal Hollenbeck is president at Check Point Software.
“We’re thrilled to welcome Francisco to Check Point. I’m excited for what lies ahead with our partners as we level up engagements, opportunities and business in 2023 and together achieve our mission of securing the world,” Hollenbeck said.
Criado hails from distribution, climbing up the ranks at TD Synnex. His last role at that organization was senior vice president of cloud, data and IoT. Prior to TD Synnex, Criado was vice president of marketing at Avnet, the global distributor of electronic components.
Criado said his work in distribution gives him a different vantage point for his new role in cybersecurity.
Check Point’s Francisco Criado
“I’ve just had a lot of gratitude. I’ve had the opportunity to do many different things … sales, marketing, BizDevOps, a little bit of finance,” he said. “And I got the opportunity to work in everything from chips and boards to the data center, to solution areas like cloud data, IoT, and, of course, cybersecurity.”
He added: “Cybersecurity is the most interesting part of tech to be in. It’s one of the reasons why I came to Check Point as well. I love technology. And I love cybersecurity. I just think the sky’s the limit based on their solutions portfolio.”
Cyber attacks are up 38% globally and 57% in the U.S., according to Check Point estimates. For partners, security is “top of mind,” Criado said, adding that many partners are transforming their practice to become an MSSP.
“[Security] comes up in pretty much every single conversation. And it’s really just becoming more of a part of the DNA of how a company works,” he said.
In October, Check Point launched a new global MSSP program. It offers an integrated security portfolio, automated processes and access to hundreds of Check Point experts and researchers.
Although Criado has only been in his role at Check Point for five days, he said he is thoroughly impressed by the culture and people at the organization. He’s also enthusiastic about the goals the company has in mind for partners.
“I know I’m repeating it, but I just really believe this passionately. I want to make sure that we’re rewarding every single influencer in the sales cycle,” he said. “You could go, of course, straight from the vendor to the partner or the vendor to the end customer. However, that’s really the traditional route to market. I really think those lines are being blurred a little bit. And that’s why we’re looking at the entire ecosystem and how we reward and compensate these different influencers as we go to market.”
Criado added that rewarding partners is the priority. This is especially the case for Check Point, which is 100% channel sales.
“We begin the sales cycle and end the sales cycle with our partners,” he said.
Claudia Adrien is a reporter for Channel Futures where she covers breaking news. Prior to Informa, she wrote about biosecurity and infectious disease for a national publication. She holds a degree in journalism from the University of Florida and resides in Tampa.
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