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March 13, 2014

Comings & Goings: Karl Soderlund Lands New Role at Aruba Following Avaya Departure

By Jonathan Keane, Contributing Writer

Avaya’s (News - Alert) former US Channel chief Karl Soderlund is to take up a new position at Aruba Networks as its first vice president of worldwide channels.

Soderlund will be responsible for coordinating and integrating the company’s three channels for the Americas, EMEA, and Asia-Pacific and will be reporting to Aruba’s first vice president of worldwide sales, John DiLullo. Soderlund told CRN that his move to the company didn’t take long and was a “quick courtship” after he finished with Avaya on Mar. 7.

“[Aruba] is at a stage right now, being close to an $800 million company, where there's just a tremendous opportunity to leverage its partner community to drive even more growth,” Soderlund said.

“The more I learned about that opportunity and the more I learned about DiLullo and [Aruba CEO] Dominic Orr (News - Alert)'s commitment to the channel as their overall growth, it was a really hard opportunity to not look at really closely.”

Soderlund was previously a major part of data networking at Avaya, a set of skills that he will be bringing to his new role at Aruba. The company has been hiring more channel reps of late and Soderlund has described a “major shift” coming in Aruba’s channel strategy.

Bill Xydias, the director of marketing at Integration Partners, who works with both Avaya and Aruba, is excited by the prospect of Soderlund’s future.

“It's always refreshing when a familiar face lands at another partner that we support. We are excited about it,” Xydias said to CRN. “It will be interesting to see how his influence will continue to evolve Aruba’s channel program.”

He added, “I know Karl [Soderlund] was a big proponent of data networking at Avaya, so it will be interesting to see how that plays out at Aruba, which is predominantly focused on wireless.”

Edited by Cassandra Tucker
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