Nextgen Group has hired Ross Wehby to lead its recently restructured cyber and data resiliency unit.
The specialist distributor decided to merge its two cyber security and data management portfolios under a single leader to increase focus, capability, resources and redundancy.
The newly rebranded unit will feature about 30 staff across Australia, New Zealand and ASEAN and is rapidly growing, maintaining a revenue base of greater than $150 million.
“It’s a big portfolio and it will be well over 50 per cent of our business,” Nextgen Group CEO John Walters hinted to ARN.
Wehby takes charge of the cyber portfolio following Gabe Marzano’s departure, who has since joined Palo Alto Networks.
He takes over the data management portfolio from James Walters, who will now focus full time on the oSpace business, which has proven to be a successful model for sales and channel management as-a-service and is expanding rapidly.
Walters said the decision to merge the two business units was a reflection of the strategic convergence of what's happening in the data management and the cyber security field.
“The continued convergence of technology suites needs constant review to ensure a more holistic approach to providing the channel and hence customers with the right solutions across protecting, storing, retrieving, and utilising data for modern enterprises and government agencies on their digital transformation journey in on-premise, cloud and hybrid environments,” he said.
“We decided to leverage the legacy that Gabe and James had created to bring their portfolios together and appoint an experienced senior and highly recognised leader to take the opportunity to the next level.
The combined portfolio contains a number of brands such as Arista Networks, Rubrik, CrowdStrike, Netskope, Imperva, Okta, Palo Alto, Nozomi and will also draw upon the Nextgen CyberLAB and other services such as oSpace, Connect, Bang, and Orbus Capital.
Prior to taking on the new leadership role, Wehby worked for CyberCX as a principal in the strategy and consulting practice fresh from leaving the Australian Defence Force in 2021.
He graduated from the Royal Military College, Duntroon in 2002, serving 20 years in the Australian Army. This included numerous operational deployments overseas and high level national security policy guidance for governments, militaries, and organisations, such as NATO, The United Nations and the G20.
Wehby was awarded the Conspicuous Service Medal for his outstanding leadership and professionalism in the Middle East theatre of operations in the 2019 Australia Day Honours List.
“Our cyber team has been founded on ex-military professionals that have the proven capability of hunting and neutralising cyber terrorists and criminals,” Walters said.
“We needed to find an ex-military leader who understands their training, capability, experience, and how to coach them to greater success for our vendors and channel partners. Ross fits that profile superbly and we welcome Ross into the Nextgen Group.”
During his time at CyberCX, Wehby provided strategic cyber leadership for a range of ASX50 company boards and c-suites, provided direction and wargaming expertise to Federal Government departments, designed programs to uplift cyber maturity in the higher education sector and delivered cyber support and surety to a range of State Government departments to drive cyber capability and operations.
“I am excited to lead a team of passionate digital experts in a time when cyber security and data integrity and reliability has never been more critical,” Wehby said.
“I look forward to supporting Nextgen’s partners and vendors by enhancing their ability to operate in the frenetic and consistently evolving digital world and working with the leadership to provide superior outcomes for Nextgen’s complete operating environment.”