Sophos shakes up channel leadership team
- 02 September, 2019 06:00
Jon Fox and Natasha Lambert (Sophos)
Sophos has unveiled a new-look channel team across Asia Pacific following three internal promotions at the security vendor.
Effective immediately, the change sees Jon Fox appointed as channel director of Asia Pacific and Japan (APJ), with Natasha Lambert replacing him as channel director of Australia and New Zealand (A/NZ).
Sonia Chamberlain has also stepped to run distribution and SMB across A/NZ, assuming the role vacated by Lambert.
“Over the past three years, Jon has made a significant contribution to the Australia and New Zealand channel community as well as Sophos’ channel-first reputation,” said Gavin Struthers, regional vice president of APJ, Sophos.
Leveraging more than 12 years in distribution across Australia and the UK, Fox joined Sophos in 2016 following management roles at Ingram Micro and Arrow Electronics.
Based in Sydney, Fox will be tasked with building out the security vendor’s channel strategy at a regional-level, in an ecosystem spanning value-added resellers, managed service providers (MSP) and system integrators.
“Like most APJ businesses, there are differences in processes, initiatives and structures between markets in the region,” observed Fox, when speaking to ARN. “A key priority will be identifying where we can create similarities and efficiencies across the region to further scale our business.”
Central to such growth will be the rise of MSPs and increased public cloud adoption, with plans in place to focus on identifying “new and complementary” partner ecosystems, as well as further enabling existing channel partners.
“MSP and security-as-a-service is where we ultimately believe the market will go and we want to make it as easy as possible for our partners to transition,” Fox said. “Also, the proliferation of public cloud across most of APJ represents an opportunity for our partners to help educate their customers around the shared security responsibility model.
“We are addressing issues such as visibility and compliance and the customer’s need for cloud security posture management with our Cloud Optix product.”
In assessing a diverse APJ market - including key markets such as A/NZ, Singapore, India and Japan - Fox said opportunity exists across the board for channel partners as the vendor looks to replicate best practice at a regional level.
“Every market across APJ is a growth market for Sophos,” Fox added. “We have phenomenal local teams in each market that are already doing an outstanding job of growing the Sophos brand.
“My focus will be looking at what different markets are doing really well, pouring fuel on them locally, but then also taking those initiatives to the other markets to promote hyper-growth.
“For example, our MSP business in A/NZ is flying: how do we take what we’ve learned there and replicate it in ASEAN? In Japan, our enterprise business is going tremendously well, so how do we take those learnings to our sales team in A/NZ?”
Replacing Fox is Lambert, who has more than 16 years experience in the technology channel following roles at Ingram Micro, Westcon-Comstor and Trend Micro.
Going forward, Lambert is tasked with identifying new opportunities for partnerships at a local level, in addition to supporting existing alliances and growing the vendor’s presence across A/NZ.
“I’ve been with Sophos for nearly three years and have enjoyed the dynamic and fast-moving environment,” said Lambert, when speaking to ARN. “In this new role, I’ll be responsible for delivering continued visible value for our partners including maintaining and expanding relationships with our ecosystem of distributors, value added resellers and managed services providers.
“This involves partner enablement and working closely with partner organisations to take Sophos’ synchronised security to customers.”
In a message to partners, Lambert said the vendor will continue its commitment to rolling out a “channel-first, channel-best” strategy at both local and regional levels.
“I’ve been in the IT channel my whole career and I talk to partners every day,” Lambert added. “I hear their challenges and have a passion to bring programs that will help grow their businesses. True partner success comes when the customer sees them as a trusted advisor and an extension of their own business.
“Partners that understand their customers’ businesses and the issues they are addressing, are the ones that will truly be successful in offering end-to-end cyber security solutions.”
Meanwhile, Chamberlain will take control of distribution and SMB enablement having previously held the position of channel account manager at Sophos. Chamberlain has more than 15 years market experience following roles at Westcon-Comstor and Ingram Micro.
“Huge congratulations to Natasha and Sonia,” Fox added. “I’ve had the pleasure of working with them both for the past two years, and they have a true commitment to the A/NZ channel community.”
The channel shake-up comes five months after Sophos appointed John Donovan as managing director of A/NZ, replacing Ashley Wearne who exited the role in January.
The appointment also followed the recruitment of Struthers as regional vice president of APJ in January, with the remit of driving market growth through the channel.