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Westcon Group Realigns Management

Top networking distributor Westcon Group continues to reshuffle its leadership team, having just promoted Lynn Smurthwaite-Murphy to senior vice president for the U.S. and Canada, reporting directly to Westcon President and CEO Dean Douglas.

Its not surprising Westcon looked in-house to fill the position. Smurthwaite-Murphy has a 23-year track record working with the channel, having previously spent three years supervising Westcons U.S. convergence business. Prior to that, she scored several notable accomplishments as vice president/general manager of Westcon Canada Systems Inc., where she oversaw double-digit revenue and margin growth in the recession-ravaged economy of 2009; helped push the company to become Ciscos fastest growing distributor year over year in the same period, which was also global Cisco distributor Comstors first year of operation in Canada; and strengthened customers relations while expanding vendor offerings.

In a separate move, Dan Forbes, who formerly held the post of head of Westcon Canadas Cisco business, has moved up to the vice president spot.

These management changes will allow our U.S. and Canadian organization to better focus on short-term execution and our longer-term strategic vision, said Douglas. Lynn did an outstanding job in leading Westcon Canada, which had a strong impact in the overall growth of our business. Through her efforts, we have become more successful in both partner outreach and vendor portfolio management.

For her part, Smurthwaite-Murphy indicated her own eagerness to get started in her new capacity. As we look towards establishing continued and predictable growth across our entire North American region, a key objective is to create a consistent go-to-market strategy across each of our business units. This will enable us to continue to drive that growth, along with enhanced productivity and increased relevance to our partners across the entire region.

These management moves are just the latest in a number of appointments at Westcon. In May, Westcon announced that Bill Corbin would be taking over as executive vice president, global vendor relationships, exiting his post as executive vice president of Comstor Worldwide, to drive and manage the companys key global vendor relationships. Operationally, Corbin is tasked with managing a team of senior relationship managers chosen for their ability to push and deepen company partnerships with key vendors, while working with and complementing Westcons existing local and regional relationships throughout the world.

As our customers continue to seek technology solutions that make their business more efficient and intelligent, we must continuously maximize the value of our key global vendor relationships wherever we do business, said Corbin. My team will be responsible for ensuring that these relationships are optimized so local customers can leverage synergistic sales opportunities.

And backing up a bit further, Corbins predecessor at Comstor, Jon Pritchard, was promoted to president of Comstor Worldwide, one of only three distributors authorized to carry Ciscos entire product portfolio throughout the world, and the only one to exclusively focus on the data giants offerings. Pritchard  brings seven years of experience as a channel executive to the table, starting with Comstor UK as sales director, and demonstrating a clear track record of creating significant market growth in the Pan-European area and globally.

We are pleased to see Comstor evolve as a truly independent, totally Cisco-aligned organization, said Bernadette Wightman, managing director, UKI Channels, Cisco. Over the last several years, Comstor has been able to develop and leverage highly effective relationships with Cisco across all our technologies and in every global theater. Over the last several years, Jon has acquired tremendous knowledge of Ciscos core technologies and we believe his appointment will help us to continue to drive accelerated growth for Ciscos products in the marketplace, as well as ensure ongoing alignment between our two organizations.


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