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January 25, 2024
Vonage on Thursday announced that CEO Rory Read will step down on Feb. 1, to be succeeded by Niklas Heuveldop, currently senior vice president at Ericsson. Heuveldop will become the new CEO of the cloud communications giant that Ericsson bought in 2022.
Just two weeks ago, communications-platform-as-a-service (CPaaS) provider Twilio announced the ouster of its longtime CEO and co-founder, Jeff Lawson, appointing the company's former chief financial officer, Khozema Shipchandler, to the role.
And then last week, GoTo, the unified communications and remote IT support provider, named former CFO Rich Veldran its new CEO, replacing Paddy Srinivasan, who served in the role for nearly four years. Before that, Srinivasan was in various senior leadership positions at LogMeIn, GoTo's moniker before its 2022 rebranding campaign.
Speaking of GoTo, there's one change in channel leadership there as well. The company on Thursday said it has hired a new global head of IT partner sales, Tony Haller. Haller previously worked at LastPass, a company acquired by GoTo in 2015 for $110 million.
Haller told Channel Futures he's looking forward to spending his time enhancing GoTo's MSP program.
GoTo's Tony Haller
With a rich background working with MSPs, Haller believes this gives him a unique outlook.
"I think this helps give a unique perspective on what an MSP needs to help run its business, the challenges they face, and the critical role that vendors can play to help these businesses succeed."
Haller says GoTo sees the channel as an extension of its business.
"The channel is an opportunity to have an indirect sales team at your disposal to help you with growth, without needing all those resources in-house," he said.
Massive leadership changes commenced at unified communications and contact center companies doing business in the channel when NICE tapped former UJET executive Steve Infante to lead its North American channel sales in December, with CPaaS firm IntelePeer also making changes.
In the new year, executive leadership changes showed no signs of slowing, with former RingCentral VP Jeff Winnett going to lead Fusion Connect's channel efforts. In the same month, Cloudli tapped Sangoma alum and channel vet Jamie Minner to become its new CEO.
8x8 also played a role in industry executive leadership changes, adding ex-Twilio, Microsoft and Oracle exec Brian Paterson to its roster to lead its North American sales team.
"Executive channel leadership turnover remains a constant in the industry," noted Devan Adams, senior principal analyst with Omdia, a Channel Futures sister research company.
Omdia's Devan Adams
He believes that embracing change and maintaining strong relationships between vendors and partners will remain essential for success in the channel.
Adams called experienced executive leaders "hot commodities," further noting that "a healthy channel environment and evolving landscape have increased the demand for experts who bring fresh new ideas and an innovative approach to capitalize on the latest market trends."
Contributing Editor, Channel Futures
Moshe has nearly a decade of expertise reporting on enterprise technology. Within that world, he covers breaking news, artificial intelligence, contact center, unified communications, collaboration, cloud adoption (digital transformation), user/customer experience, hardware/software, etc.
As a contributing editor at Channel Futures, Moshe covers unified communications/collaboration from a channel angle. He formerly served as senior editor at GetVoIP News and as a tech reporter at UC/CX Today.
Moshe also has contributed to Unleash, Workspace-Connect, Paste Magazine, Claims Magazine, Property Casualty 360, the Independent, Gizmodo UK, and ‘CBD Intel.’ In addition to reporting, he spends time DJing electronic music and playing the violin. He resides in Mexico.
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