Former Symantec PR Advisors Jump to Sophos
Symantec (SYMC) and Connect Marketing (which also offers PR services) have parted ways after more than 20 years. The big twist: Connect now represents Sophos, an up-and-coming security rival that has been shaking up its own business lately.
An email from a Connect representative to The VAR Guy stated:
"Connect no longer represents Symantec's PR interests. After more than 20-years we've agreed to part ways as Symantec has decided to consolidate to a global PR agency as part of their restructure. That said, we look forward to continuing our working relationship with you and are excited to now be working with Sophos."
Yowzers. That last line was a bit of a bombshell, considering how long Connect and Symantec had been working together.
Still, the writing was on the wall. Symantec changed CEOs in mid-2012. New CEO Steve Bennett promised to carefully examine all components of Symantec's business. Most recently, the moves apparently included Symantec's PR shift.
Wall Street seems pleased with the company's sharpened focus — shares in SYMC climed from about $17.94 in Oct. 2012 to about $24.52 at the start of Oct. 2013. And recent news about Symantec's CFO departing for a new opportunity didn't seem to spook investors. (The company will announce quarterly results October 23.)
Meanwhile, Sophos has been making some dramatic changes of its own. In addition to hiring Connect Marketing to boost its PR initiatives, Sophos in August 2013 named John Keenan as vice president of sales for North America. Keenan joined Sophos from Dell SonicWALL — where he was credited with building that division's channel strategy. Keenan now reports to Sophos Senior VP of Sales Michael Valentine.
Where will Sophos head from here? Chances are, the clues will emerge soon from Connect Marketing…