Ziply Fiber's debut really had people buzzing.

Edward Gately, Senior News Editor

May 8, 2020

5 Min Read
Big News

Ziply Fiber taking over Frontier Communications’ Northwest operations, layoffs at Cloudera and FireEye, and RingCentral’s latest offering caught our readers’ attention this week.

Our latest weekly roundup also includes our popular Channel People On the Move gallery, and Ingram Micro’s financial services helping partners during the COVID-19 pandemic.

7. Sierra Wireless Vet’s Work ‘Not Done,’ Returns to Lead Master Agent Channel

Sierra Wireless vet Chris Whitaker rejoined the company after a one-year stint at Kore Wireless so he can lead its master agent channel.

Whitaker is channel program chief for managed connectivity solutions (MCS). He was Kore’s vice president of channel partnerships, IoT enabler and cellular connectivity.

Whitaker first joined Sierra Wireless in December 2015. Before that, he spent nearly nine years at Comcast Business.

“I was the channel leader that launched this part of the business with Sierra back in 2016 and had a year break in service with another role,” he said. “When I had the chance to go back to the team I was familiar with, it was a no-brainer. Not often does an opportunity like this happen in your career.”

Whitaker shared more details about his plans in a Q&A.

6. Ingram Micro Financial Services Helping Partners During COVID-19 Pandemic

Channel partners are giving more financial flexibility to their cash-strapped customers via Ingram Micro financial services as the pandemic continues.

Ingram Micro is among several companies in the channel responding to rapidly changing needs due to the pandemic.

There are two new Ingram Micro financial services for channel partners in the United States and Canada. They are called “90-Days Same as Cash” and “Bakers Dozen.”

“Our purpose with these financial programs is to ease the cash-flow burden for our partners and their end-users during these challenging times,” said Anthony Mackle, senior vice president and chief finance executive for Ingram Micro’s U.S. and export businesses. “We’ve extended terms, developed new financing options, provided support and clarification on the CARES Act, and have kept the lines of communication wide open with our partners and alliances.”

Our report covers more details.

5. RingCentral’s Unified Desktop Application Offers New User Experience

RingCentral unveiled its new unified desktop application for improved enterprise communications.

It includes RingCentral’s message video phone (MVP) capabilities and streamlines the experience in a single offering. The application is available on Windows PCs and Macs.

Lisa Del Real is RingCentral’s vice president of global partner programs. She said now more than ever businesses need technology that allows them to work from anywhere.

The RingCentral unified desktop app supports collaboration across a “highly mobile, dispersed workforce,” she said.

Other key features include advanced search functionality and third-party integrations. The app offers integrations with several business productivity applications such as Microsoft Office 365 and Google.

Our report covers more details.

4. FireEye Layoffs ‘Never Ideal,’ But ‘Necessary’

FireEye is laying off workers, and it has nothing to do with COVID-19.

The cybersecurity vendor is cutting 6% of its workforce, or 204 employees, as part of a restructuring process. It was planned long before the pandemic.

Most of the FireEye layoffs affect employees working in mature appliance-based product areas.

More than 40 employees are losing …

… their jobs at FireEye’s global headquarters in Milpitas, California. FireEye’s workforce was 3,400 at the end of 2019.

Learn more about the layoffs in our report.

3. Channel People on the Move: LogMeIn, BullsEye, Powernet

The pandemic isn’t stopping people from finding new job opportunities in the channel.

Our latest edition covers the telecom and IT channels from top to bottom. Here, you’ll find channel managers, all the way up to CEOs who make important calls that will impact how partners do business.

A longtime Intelisys vet found a new home leading LogMeIn’s channel program. And a former big name at Avaya now has an important role with Lenovo’s Data Center Group channel.

Find out who made moves in the channel in our gallery.

2. Cloudera Job Cuts ‘Difficult Decision’ Amid COVID-19 Pandemic

Cloudera confirmed job cuts, and these are directly due to the pandemic.

The company, however, wouldn’t say how many jobs it cut or where those employees work. Cloudera is based in Palo Alto, California.

According to its latest annual report, Cloudera’s full-time workforce was more than 2,700 on Jan. 31. Of those, more than 1,400 are in the United States and another 1,300 are in international locations.

There’s sure to be more layoffs taking place in the channel as Janco Associates reports over 102,300  IT pros lost their jobs in April.

Our report provides more details on Cloudera’s job cuts.

1. Ziply Fiber Takes Over Frontier Communications’ Northwest Operations

Now this story had people buzzing, and we’re still getting comments. And they’re not welcoming to Ziply Fiber.

Instead, they’re criticizing Frontier Communications’ service and aren’t expecting much improvement from Ziply Fiber.

Ziply Fiber is a new company that is investing $500 million to improve its network and service. Frontier Communications sold the assets to WaveDivision Capital in partnership with Searchlight Capital Partners for $1.35 billion. The operations and assets are in Washington, Oregon, Idaho and Montana.

Ziply Fiber is inheriting the network, which it is improving as part of its $500 million investment. It also has 500,000 customers across the four states and a workforce of nearly 1,000 employees.

Frontier Communications filed chapter 11 bankruptcy last month as part of a restructuring agreement to shed more than $10 million in debt. With the sale complete, Frontier operates in 25 states.

Our report covers Ziply Fiber’s debut and looks at small internet providers questioning the accuracy of Frontier Communications’ broadband reporting to the Federal Communications Commission.

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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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