“The partners that understand that they can differentiate by combining security and networking practices for the purpose of stopping these threats are going to be the ones that are going to be successful,” said new Infoblox Vice President of Americas Partner Sales George Hope. “The partners that adopt this faster are going to stand out in the long run.”
George Hope, the former worldwide head of partner sales for Hewlett Packard Enterprise, has joined threat defense provider InfoBlox as its vice president of Americas Partner Sales.
Hope, a nine year HPE veteran who left the company in February, was one of the driving forces behind HPE GreenLake cloud services sales growth over the last several years. He was named by CRN the No. 1 most influential sales leader of 2021 and No. 2 in 2022.
Hope said he is looking forward to helping partners tackle what amounts to a “huge” opportunity to stop cyber-threats by leveraging Infoblox’s unique ability to identify threats at the DNS level. InfoBlox’s BloxOne threat defense platform analyzes 70 billion DNS queries a day.
“The partners that understand that they can differentiate by combining security and networking practices for the purpose of stopping these threats are going to be the ones that are going to be successful,” said Hope. “The partners that adopt this faster are going to stand out in the long run. By operating at the DNS level we see threats that other solutions don’t see, stopping them earlier in the threat life cycle. We see inside the building. We can tell what’s wrong because we see all the network traffic.”
Hope said many partners simply do not yet understand the power of driving a combined network and security focus to stop threats. “When we have the conversation with partners on combining networking and security the lightbulb goes off,” he said. “Combining networking and security gives partners the ability to solve these security problems quicker. If you don’t drive collaboration with networking and security and correlate what is going on in both environments then you are missing a big opportunity to stop these threats in their tracks before they happen.”
Hope said he will be focused out of the gate on growing the ecosystem of partners focused on threat defense at the DNS level with BloxOne. “I’m going to be looking at how much of the ecosystem is out there driving threat defense and how can we grow that,” he said. “Priority one is to help partners better understand how they can make money by combining networking and security with BloxOne.”
Hope said he is particularly excited about taking on the Americas role where he can work hand in hand with partners to drive sales growth with BloxOne. “I’m looking forward to touching more partners, rolling my sleeves up and helping them build out practices with robust security and networking solutions from Infoblox,” he said.
Hope’s appointment comes just six months after the former vice president and general manager of Cisco’s $20 billion intent based network business unit, Scott Harrell, took the helm as CEO of Infoblox.
Harrell has stepped up the Infoblox charge to get partners and customers to combine Network Operations and Security Operations teams in order to provide better visibility to stop cyber threats.
C. R. Howdyshell, CEO of Advizex, a Fulcrum IT Partners company and one of the top everything as a service providers in the country, said the hiring of Hope is a huge channel coup for Infoblox.
“George Hope’s channel track record and success speaks for itself,” said Howdyshell. “George knows the channel and channel ecosystem as well as anybody. Infoblox needs the credibility that George Hope brings to the channel. This reinforces the Infoblox investment and commitment to grow the channel. Hiring George and reinforcing that their growth strategy is channel led makes Infoblox two for two!”
Howdyshell said he is excited about Hope rejoining former EMC colleagues Terry Flynn, worldwide vice president of sales strategy, analytics, operations and enablement for Infoblox, and Mitch Breen, chief revenue officer of Infoblox, as part of a channel triumvirate.
“Combining George Hope’s experience with what Terry Flynn and Mitch Breen are building and it is a home run,” he said. “They all have EMC DNA. They are going to do it. It’s going to work. The chemistry of those three is going to make this work for the channel. They are going to do what they need to do collectively to make this happen. This is hand in hand a collective investment for success for the channel and Infoblox.”
Hope will report to Infoblox Vice President of Global Partner Sales and Alliances Chris Millerick, who has been overseeing the InfoBlox channel for the last two years.
“We would like to see our channel partners invest to ‘Skill Up To Secure’ their customers more effectively with Infoblox solutions,” he wrote in the CRN Channel Chiefs listing. “We believe the opportunity to secure the enterprise is limitless with Infoblox in the years ahead.”
Hope for his part said he was attracted to the channel job at Infoblox by the opportunity to join a “fast growing” company that is focused on uniting networking and security. “There is a huge opportunity for partners to pull that together,” he said. “I’m going to be helping partners build out capabilities across those two areas so they can be differentiated. Right now that is just not happening enough.”
Key to success in the current channel landscape is driving partners to lead with their own intellectual property with recurring revenue managed services, said Hope. “Everyone is pivoting to annual recurring revenue,” he said. “We are going to help our partners take advantage of those channel trends. I understand what makes partners tick. We think we can be more relevant to partners.”
With the increase in more employees working from home, the growth of data at the edge and the number of devices logged into the network, the need for a combined network and security focus with BloxOne has never been greater, said Hope.
“The attack surface is just getting bigger and bigger,” he said. “It is critical to figure out when you are getting attacked as early as possible. Our differentiator is we help you see it sooner than you normally would. This is the perfect opportunity because of the strong foundation we have and the high ceiling in terms of partner growth. There is a huge opportunity to go drive that vision and adoption into the partner community. It’s all about helping partners be more relevant and make more money.”
Hope, who started in the new job today, said he is excited to meet his new channel team and get in front of partners. “I’m excited to learn, share my experience with the team and get partners as excited as I am about the opportunity,” he said. “I’m looking forward to spending time with my team in front of partners not in the conference room. I’m looking forward to getting out there!”