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Activist investor Elliott twists Citrix's arm until it hires new channel veep

Cough, yell ball-gripping bods at investment biz

Citrix – currently held in a vice-like grip by activist investor Elliot Management – has hired Kimberly Martin as global channel chief.

The hedge fund upped its stake in Citrix in June and true to form, complained with menacing intent of under-performing sales and a weakness in strategy for third parties' firms that take Citrix's product to market.

A month later, CEO Mark Templeton confirmed he is to step down once a successor is recruited, and Citrix revealed Elliot Management senior portfolio manager Jesse Cohn was taking a seat on the board.

Martin was ushered into the channel hot seat this week, replacing Tom Fink, who was made veep of sales and services in February amid a shake-up of the team in Europe too, including now ex-exec Kevin Bland.

Citrix said Martin is to spend time “evolving partner strategy” for ISVs, OEMs, SIs, service providers, and last but – hopefully – not least, reseller & disties.

One of the criticisms levelled at Citrix by wheel-grabbing shareholder Elliott Management is channel resources are “stretched across too many partners” including those not doing enough business with it.

“Martin’s appointment is part of a broader sales transformation plan that was initiated earlier this year,” said Citrix.

Prior to landing at Citrix, Martin was veep of worldwide business developments and partners at Datameer, where she is credited with building a community of seller in the Hadoop tech space.

Further back in time, she was veep of global channels at Informatica – another one of Eliott Management’s conquests – and also once ran Microsoft’s EMEA partner trade customer business.

Martin will report to Carlos Sartorius, senior veep of worldwide sales and services. He promised Citrix will “create more ways to engage and reinvigorate our channel partners”.

A bit of consistency would be nice. ®

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