GTT Communications‘ new Americas channel chief has big plans for targeting the midmarket and beefing up the company’s back-office operation.
Rob Westervelt, who joined the company in in 2017, has been named senior vice president for channel sales for the Americas division. Prior to this appointment, he was vice president for channel sales for the East. He will lead GTT’s indirect channel sales across the Americas, including partner-program strategies, initiatives and relationship management.
Westervelt brings more than 25 years of experience to his new role. Previous jobs include vice president and general manager of global solutions at NTT America, senior vice president of indirect sales at Broadview Networks, and president of alternate channels at XO Communications.
GTT has acquired and successfully integrated more than 30 companies in the last 10 years, resulting in a revenue run rate approaching $2 billion. In addition to acquiring communications services provider Access Point, GTT last year bought Interoute, a U.K.-based company known for its fiber network and cloud-networking solutions, and Accelerated Connections, a managed networking, VoIP and colocation service provider.
In a Q&A with Channel Partners, Westervelt talks about his expanded role with GTT and what he hopes to accomplish in the coming months.
Channel Partners: How is your role with GTT expanding?
Rob Westervelt: The role that I have right now is going to be running the channel on a national basis, and currently we’re focused on enterprise customers, but we’re adding a new team that’s going to be focused on the midmarket … so our growth is in enterprise as it has been, but we’re adding additional sales folks and an additional vice president to go after the midmarket. So the next level down in subagents is where we’re heading right now to really increase and get that market share.
CP: In this expanded role, are you going to have more of a say in terms of channel strategy and partner program? If so, what’s your take there and do you see a need for changes?
RW: I’m going to be responsible for the strategy. I’m also going to be responsible for all the marketing dollars and events that we do with regards to master agents, obviously the channel partner events that we attend and then also with a focus on how we get into more events that are focused on the subagents that we’re actually trying to get — that subset of subagents. We’ve had a lot of really good growth in the channel from 2018 to 2019 – almost fourfold – and we’re looking to continue to do that as well.
We acquired a company called Access Point [in October] and they were 100 percent focused on channel, so with Access Point coming on, I also have the back office, which is the quoting and building the proposals, so I’m looking at how we support our agents a little bit differently so that we can really scale this thing up.
CP: GTT has acquired and integrated more than 30 companies in the past 10 years. More acquisitions likely are coming. How does that impact your role with the channel?
RW: The great thing about GTT is …