Fall brings a change of nature’s colors, but a rise in big stories such as job cuts, mergers, technology rankings and more.
September alone featured layoffs at CenturyLink, more legacy-services decommissioning by Level 3, Windstream commission cuts and, of course, people on the move. As always, we’ve tallied our results by combining weekly newsletter numbers with online page views.
What else was big in September? Click through our gallery to see which story was No. 1.
Looking for more top stories? Click here to see our most-read posts in August.
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CenturyLink said it would reduce its workforce by 7-8 percent by mid-December, first with voluntary severance packages and then layoffs.
CenturyLink spokesman Mark Molzen told Channel Partners that the Monroe, Louisiana-based telco continually evaluates its cost structure and business practices, and adjusts its operations to meet the needs of the business.
With about 43,000 employees, a 7-8 percent workforce reduction would impact roughly 3,000-3,400 people. The workforce reduction isn’t focused on any specific group of employees, Molzen said.
Get the full scoop on CenturyLink layoffs here.
Channel Partners attended the Las Vegas soiree, and sat down with Curtis Hutcheson, VP & GM of SonicWALL, and John Milburn, executive director and GM of One Identity, which is becoming an independent company under Quest Software.
In this Q&A with Channel Partners, Hutcheson and Milburn talk about what lies ahead for their respective companies and their goals for growth.
Did you miss this year’s VMware VMworld, which moved from San Francisco to Vegas?
The virtualization giant’s executives outlined new products and services and highlighted top customers and partners. Hundreds of companies showcased their portfolios in the Solutions Exchange expo hall.
Click here for our images and a news wrap from VMworld.
Level 3 is upgrading its network, decommissioning legacy switches in certain parts of the country and updating them with new equipment.
That led to the company’s latest move to discontinue more of its TDM-based voice services in the Spokane, Washington-Coeur d’Alene, Idaho, area.
Level 3 is seeking permission from the Federal Communications Commission to discontinue the services on or around Nov. 4. In May, Level 3 sought FCC approval to discontinue the same TDM-based voice services in Portland effective on or around Aug. 25.
It’s been another huge year for merger and acquisition announcements.
Just this summer, we learned about ScanSource’s big Intelisys buy and Sandler Partners’ purchase of X4 Solutions.
We broke down July and August’s big M&A in this gallery, which you flocked to in droves.
Cisco and HPE Aruba lead the latest ranking of wireless LAN (WLAN) vendors.
Brocade’s recently acquired Ruckus rounds out the list of companies in the “leader” category of the IHS Markit WLAN Infrastructure Vendor Scorecard, released last month.
The study measured market presence and momentum for providers of enterprise WLAN equipment – such as controllers and access points for wireless networks.
See more of the leaders here.
Charter Communications‘ VP of channel sales, Greg Iuzzolino, chatted with us about how his companyÂ will begin consolidating all of its partners, as well as those ofÂ Time Warner Cable and Bright House Networks, under one unified partner program in 2017.
â… Week two, we set up calls with our partners just to really reassure them, to let them know that itâs business as usual for 2016, and so â¦ continue to work with the sales leaders, continue to work with your current channel managers because we have three very diverse, separate footprints,” he said.
You can learn a lot more about the integration here.
In a wide-reaching Q&A as part of our Channel Partners advisory-board profile series, Atrion’s Paul Cronin discussed the acquisition of his company by Carousel Industries.
“Even today prior to the acquisition taking place, we’re still teaming up to win business and to provide clients more options than either of us could have done before the acquisition,” he said. “We’re transacting business as partners. We’re collaborating as one to create something great once this transaction takes place.”
Cronin said teaming up with Carousel made sense in light of Atrion’s goal to expand nationally.
“When we look at the potential of scaling and becoming more of a national presence, the most logical solution was to do something with a company that’s already done it, and that was Carousel,” he said.
Another month, another appearance for Channel People on the Move in our top 12.
This one featured hires and promotions at CenturyLink, Vonage, WTG and more.
Westcon Group’s Gahn Lane joined CenturyLink to build a federal partner program from the ground up and beef up the telco’s alliances with ISVs.
Lane previously was Westcon’s vice president of service-provider sales, and before that was Nortel Networks’ vice president of sales. He now is CenturyLink’s VP of ISV and federal channels.
Lane has more than 20 years of experience in leading direct, channel and vertical sales organizations.
Here is where to learn more about Lane and what this new federal program will have to offer.
A number ofÂ Windstream agents say they were caught off guard by a letter from the telco stating that their commissions could be reduced by 50 percent.
In a letter dated Aug. 26, Windstream said it plans to reduce by 50 percent commissions for PaeTec accounts that are currently outside of their contract terms to the extent that those accounts are not renewed for full additional terms and for at least 12 months. Windstream acquired PaeTec in late 2011.
One of the agents who received the letter, who spoke under anonymity, said this is a âmajor commission hit with deep ramifications to our ability to operate.” He chose to speak anonymously because the letter says all information contained is confidential.
Jason Dishon, Windstreamâs channel chief of enterprise sales and operations, tells Channel Partners that this is part of the telcoâs effort to refine its channel-partner strategy.
âEarlier this yearÂ we announced a complete redesign of our channel service model to give partners dedicated support and access to additional resources, information and tools,” he said. âThe investments are part of a long-term strategy to simplify and strengthen our channel program to give partners and customers more efficiency, better prioritization and an improved customer experience.”
There’s more to this story. It’s here.
You got giddy and googly-eyed over pictures from Avant’s new colorful Chicago offices, which the company’s president, Drew Lydecker, told us is “a beautiful new flagship headquarters that’s really built out for our customers.”
The cornerstone of the facility is what the company calls a “BattleLab,” an educational immersion center designed to help partners “sell more cloud, colo and connectivity than ever before.”
Want to see more of Avant’s new digs? Go here.