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Exclusive: Datto Channel Executive Departing, Others Reportedly Could Follow

The first departure comes as speculation swirls around Datto looking for a buyer.

Edward Gately

March 25, 2022

5 Min Read
Lit exit signs down hallway
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There’s a big shake-up among Datto‘s channel leadership team. One executive has confirmed his departure and speculation is swirling that other senior executives may soon leave the company.

Eric Torres, Datto’s director of channel development, has confirmed to Channel Futures that he’s leaving. Torres said he’s joining another company in the channel that doesn’t compete with Datto. Next week is his last at the MSP technology company.

Torres said he’ll disclose his new employer within two weeks. Datto didn’t respond to a request for comment on Torres’ departure.

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Datto’s Eric Torres

“I am incredibly excited about the new position and the future that it holds,” he said. “I’m staying in the channel and it’s an exciting opportunity. It will be very similar to what I’m doing – channel development – and still traveling to the industry events, presenting and helping grow another company.”

Accomplishments at Datto

At Datto, Torres has been responsible for recruiting, growing and developing the company’s global partners to drive new revenue opportunities. The Datto executive worked closely with sales, business development and marketing to ensure partners are using the resources available to grow their business.

Here’s our list of channel people on the move in February.

Torres joined Datto more than seven years ago. Before that, he was with River Run, an MSP, for nine years. During this final three years with River Run, the MSP was a Datto partner.

“So being a part of the Datto family for over a decade, it’s hard to walk away,” he said. “They’re fantastic people and I have lifelong friendships with Datto employees, and even more important, partners. It’s bittersweet, but the time has come. We worked hard over seven years to build something amazingly cool and I will forever be proud of it. The time has come to find a new challenge, move on and do it for another organization.”

Torres said he’s “eagerly looking to get out there and spread the word” about the company he’s joining and building “something special.”

“To put Datto partners’ minds at ease, if they have any concerns, there’s still an amazing team,” he said. “Michael DePalma, Jason Pryce and Desraie Thomas are still out there building the brand — and the partners are in good hands.”

More Departures Looming?

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Datto’s Rob Rae

Torres might not be the only channel executive leaving Datto. According to sources close to the company, other senior channel leaders inside the organization are considering a move. Those sources said speculation has been swirling for weeks that Rob Rae, Datto’s senior vice president of business development, may soon leave, motivating employees like Torres to look for other opportunities.

However, there are other industry insiders who said such a move by Datto’s high-level channel leadership would be unlikely until the company sorts through reported plans to go private via a buyout by private-equity investors.

“An executive walking away right now would be forfeiting a lot,” said a source close to Datto.

‘Flip-Flopping’ Inside Datto?

“There has been a lot of flip-flopping inside Datto,” said one industry source when asked about …

… whether high-level channel executives including Rae would depart because of a reported buyout of the company. “There is a lot a change at Datto right now.”

When asked about whether Rae would leave the organization, one source said, “At this moment it is not true, and Rob does not have another job.” However, speculation has mounted in recent weeks because senior leadership at the company have interviewed candidates for a high-level global channel role. Whether that role was in addition to the current channel team or would replace a Datto executive could not be determined.

Another source said with the demand for channel executives at an all-time high, it is likely that recruiters or senior executives are scouring the market for talent and targeting Datto, which has some of the most visible executives in the MSP and SMB market.

In January, Splunk vet Brooke Cunningham joined Datto as its new chief marketing officer (CMO). She was with Splunk for nearly six years. Her most recent role was area vice president of global partner marketing and experience.

Critical Juncture for Datto

Datto reportedly is considering its strategic options, including a possible sale, after getting takeover interest from private equity firms. According to Bloomberg, Datto is working with a financial adviser to solicit interest from potential suitors. Private equity firms have already expressed interest in Datto, said one of the persons it cited.

Datto isn’t commenting and reportedly hasn’t yet made any decision regarding its strategic options.

Dennis Hahn is senior analyst of data center storage at Omdia. (Omdia and Channel Futures share a parent company, Informa.) He told us Datto’s IP overlaps most of the major market players, so a suitor would likely be an adjacent market player.

The MSP technology company went public in October 2020. It began trading on the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE), selling 22 million shares to raise $594 million in its initial public offering (IPO).

However, Datto’s stock price has fallen 13% since its IPO.

Strong Earnings

For the fourth quarter of 2021, Datto reported $164.3 million in revenue, up from $139 million one year earlier. Profit was $5.7 million compared to a $7.2 million loss from the same period in the previous year.

In its latest annual report, filed with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission on Feb. 23, Datto gives a bright forecast of its MSP business.

“MSPs represent the future of IT management for SMBs,” it said. “As dedicated technology experts, MSPs are equipped with the IT resources and expertise SMBs lack, providing a single source to meet all of an SMB’s IT needs. MSPs are trusted to select, procure and implement software and technology stacks for their SMB customers. After implementation, MSPs provide ongoing value to SMBs through strategic guidance, technical support, monitoring and maintenance of their full IT environments.”

Want to contact the author directly about this story? Have ideas for a follow-up article? Email Edward Gately or connect with him on LinkedIn.

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About the Author(s)

Edward Gately

Senior News Editor, Channel Futures

As news editor, Edward Gately covers cybersecurity, new channel programs and program changes, M&A and other IT channel trends. Prior to Informa, he spent 26 years as a newspaper journalist in Texas, Louisiana and Arizona.

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