Avaya Hires Certeon Sales Exec as New U.S. Channel Chief

Avaya's Karl Soderlund

Avaya Inc. has hired a new channel chief to replace Carol Giles Neslund, who left the company in April. Karl Soderlund is stepping into the role of vice president for U.S. channel sales, where hell oversee Avaya Connect partners strategy and revenue.

Soderlund comes from WAN optimization software developer Certeon; he had been serving as senior vice president of worldwide sales and business development. Soderlund also has held channel management positions for HP ProCurve and Fortinet Inc. and worked for Cisco Systems Inc. He reports to Steve Fitz, Avayas vice president of U.S. sales, according to reports, and will be based out of the companys Basking Ridge, N.J., headquarters.

Soderlunds hiring comes as Avaya preps once again to become a public company. In early June, the supplier of business communications systems filed with the SEC for a proposed initial public offering of $1 billion. Avaya said it plans to use the proceeds from the sale of common stock to pay down some long-term debt, among other items. For the fiscal year ending Sept. 30, 2010, Avaya reported a $936 million net loss on revenue of roughly $5.1 billion. Fifty-five percent of the companys revenue is generated in the U.S., according to the filing.

Avaya traded on Wall Street before being bought out by private equity firms TPG Capital and Silver Lake in 2007. The company expressed an interest in going public not long after buying bankrupt Nortel Networks enterprise division in 2009.

Avaya makes a number of communications platforms, including Ethernet switches, unified communications and IP phones.

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