CompTIA Names Telecom Advisory Council Members

By Craig Galbraith Comments
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CompTIA has formed a new industry group focused on the growing convergence of telecom and information technology (IT).

Dubbed the CompTIA Telecom Advisory Council, members will aim to provide strategic insight and vendor-neutral guidance on the evolving and expanding relationships between agents who resell telecom services and IT firms that focus on data needs.

“These two channels, once separate and distinct, have come closer together out of business necessity and customer demand," said Jeff Ponts, executive vice president, DataTel Solutions, and co-chair of the CompTIA Telecom Advisory Council. “The convergence of voice and data, the emergence of cloud computing and the explosion of mobile technology are some of the factors bringing these two groups together."

A 2012 study by Channel Partners and CompTIA found that partnerships between telecom agents and solution providers are generating significant business, with some companies earning up to three-quarters of annual revenue from these strategic and tactical collaborations. But there also are potential pitfalls: poor communications; a lack of rules on engagement; and failure to understand each other’s business model.

“We intend to identify the factors that lead to success and to guide the development of education and training regimens, research, credentials and other resources for the industry so that business partners can succeed and their customers can benefit," said Scott Levy, vice president, enterprise development, AOTMP, and co-chair of the CompTIA council.

Mike Saxby, president, Communications Management Services, will serve as vice chair of the group. Other members include Laura Bernstein, president, CRA Telecom; Shawn Cordner, chief executive officer, In2itive Marketing; Larry Foster, president and general manager, PINNACLE; Hilary Gadda, director, telepartner channels, Telepacific Communications; Ian Kleninger, chief executive officer, Avant Communications; Jack Knocke, owner, The VAR Advisor; Michael Paynter, chief executive officer, Tier3 Technologies; Greg Plum, vice president, channel development, Start Meeting; Bill Potter, chief executive officer, Message Broadcast; Peter Radizeski, telecom consultant, Rad-Info; Meggin Sawyer, vice president, enterprise division sales, ADTRAN; Bryan Schroder, principal, Cynergy Services; and Richard Williams, executive director, channels, Verizon.

CompTIA is a nonprofit association for the IT industry. The new council will meet at the CompTIA Annual Member Meeting, March 12-13, in Chicago.

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