Some channel-leadership news came to light in Tuesday’s “Future of the Channel" keynote roundtable at the Fall 2010 Channel Partners Conference & Expo.
First, as most agents know, Craig Schlagbaum has resigned from Level 3 Communications Inc. Nigel Williams, Level 3’s senior vice president of enterprise sales, on Tuesday said Schlagbaum’s departure stemmed from channel restructuring. The carrier recently combined its three sales programs into one, but channel chief Schlagbaum wanted his career to go in other directions, Williams said. Indeed, Schlagbaum last week told PHONE+ he wanted to “pursue some new career challenges and demonstrate success in a new arena." Williams, who looks to remain at the helm of Level 3’s channel operations, said Level 3’s consolidation move was “all about productivity and efficiency."
And next, Blake Wetzel, who’s run Qwest’s Business Partner Program since August 2009, will remain in that position after the $22.4 billion merger (including the assumption of debt) of Qwest and CenturyLink closes. Wetzel said he just found out about the decision on Sept. 20. It seems a wise move on the part of CenturyLink — that carrier hasn’t been as active in the channel as Qwest and would be taking a giant risk with its indirect revenue by replacing Wetzel and crew.