**Editor's Note: Click here to see which channel people were on the move in April and May.**
PlanetOne Communications is adding Southern California to the regions where it operates.
The Scottsdale, Ariz.-based master agency expanded to the northeastern United States in late 2011 and soon it will have presence in the Irvine area.
To support that growth, PlanetOne has hired two new employees: Eric Cooke is joining as senior technology adviser and Jake Schuman will serve as partner development manager. Both will work out of the Orange County office and report to Jonathan Hartman, vice president of sales. For now, Cooke and Schuman are based in Scottsdale until the new facility opens this fall.
Cooke brings 16 years of telecom experience to PlanetOne; he most recently worked for Windstream. There, he spent almost seven years supporting channel partners. He also has held roles at companies including Charter Communications, Mpower Communications and TelePacific Communications. At PlanetOne, Cooke will help partners identify new revenue opportunities within existing customers.
"We'll tackle expiring contracts, re-engage those customers and find the next generation of services that we can move them to," said Cooke, who holds the Certified Telecom Professional designation. “I feel that it's going to be an important resource for our partners, who are looking to maintain their current revenue and accounts while transitioning customers to the right mix of network services and modernized technology while extending customer lifecycle."
Schuman, meanwhile, will be responsible for existing partners in Southern California and also will focus on adding new VARs, MSPs and agents to PlanetOne’s roster. Like Cooke, Schuman is a Certified Telecom Professional. He comes to PlanetOne from Cbeyond and Windstream. At Cbeyond, he was a territory sales rep; at Windstream, an account manager.
"I'm very excited to give our partners a local representative in Southern California, and look forward to developing new strategic relationships for PlanetOne," Schuman said.