Global Crossing Changes Channel

Global Crossing Ltd. in late May laid off several employees that supported the companys channel program, according to sources close to the company. The reduction impacted less than five people in executive and support roles; names were not disclosed, but PHONE+ has learned at least two were channel managers.

The action touched off rumors that Global Crossing was making sweeping changes to its indirect sales strategy. PHONE+ sources say there is not going to be a conscious effort to reduce partners because the company doesnt have as many resources now.

They say cuts were part of an overall directive to reduce operating expenses. In its first quarter earnings report issued May 10, the company reported its cost-cutting generated opex savings of at least $20 million by reducing headcount, realigning organizations, outsourcing third-party maintenance and cutting discretionary expenses. Another $15 million in cuts is anticipated in 2007. The number of company-wide layoffs was not disclosed. At the same time, the company added more than 1,400 to its payroll as a result of its recent acquisitions of Impsat and Fibernet.

Agent Ben Humphreys is president of COMTEL Communications and president of the Agent Alliance buying consortium, which has a group contract with Global Crossing. Humphreys is confident the contract is not in jeopardy and is not concerned about the reductions in headcount being a sign of more to come.

Instead, he believes their intentions are to make some positive changes long-term.

Among those changes are the mid-April appointment of Jeff Callahan as vice president of channel partners. This is the first time a channel executive has held a vice presidential title at Global Crossing, which is an indication of the companys commitment to the channel as a means to scale its sales force in North America, sources claim.

Most recently, Callahan oversaw the office of the CEO, working side by side with Global Crossings chief executive, John Legere, as well as other executives on strategy, business planning, finance, sales initiatives and more. He has also served in management roles in systems development, program management and sales operations at Global Crossing.

Agent Alliance
Global Crossing Ltd.

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