Changing of the Guard at VMware and Vonage
by Jim Lundy and Adam Pease
Staffing shakeups at two major enterprise providers are an exciting start to the week. Vonage and VMware have both announced new hires that will transform the direction of their companies and the direction of the market in general. At Vonage, CEO Alan Masarek has stepped down. And at VMware, new CMO Carol Carpenter joins the team. In this blog, we review the staffing changes and what they may mean for the enterprise technology market more generally.
Vonage Shakes up the Unified Communications and Collaboration C-Suite
Alan Masarek, the CEO of Vonage, a provider of a unified communications platform for enterprises, has stepped down for undisclosed reasons. He will be succeeded by Rory Read, who comes from the Dell Technologies-owned company Virtustream, a cloud services and cloud storage provider.
As CEO, Masarek gave Vonage a complete makeover, transforming it from a consumer-focused entity to a leading enterprise provider of unified communications as a service. It will be interesting to see what this hiring change means for Vonage's pattern of acquisitions. Historically, Masarek was able to shift Vonage's focus from consumer products to the enterprise space via a series of shrewd acquisitions and smart executive hires. With acquisitions like Nexmo in 2016, Tokbox in 2018, and Over.ai last year, Masarek has strategically positioned Vonage to be a core UCC provider for the enterprise.
As many enterprises shift to cloud solutions to support growing teams of remote workers, it makes sense for Vonage to find new hires with expertise in this market area. In general, Vonage is well-positioned for the near future as a UCC provider in a market where video conferencing solutions are in high demand. It remains to be seen whether or not Read will push acquisitions as heavily as his predecessor, but Vonage is in a growth position.
With Carol Carpenter, VMware Aims for the Cloud
VMware, a cloud, network security, and digital workplace solutions provider, brings on Carol Carpenter as their new chief marketing officer. Carpenter, who was formerly vice president of Product Marketing at Google Cloud, helped transform G Suite and Google Cloud into flagship enterprise products. She was one of the people who helped put the Google Cloud brand on the front burner for customers and partners.
As VMware focuses more on cloud and multi-cloud, Carol is the right person to help with positioning and go-to-market messaging. G Suite’s marketing has led to larger enterprise adoption, and Google Cloud has been a success story for Google. Like Vonage, the emphasis on cloud solutions situates VMware well to adjust to the emerging remote work era.
Ultimately, these hires are an exciting turn of events in the enterprise technology market that may signal new directions for Vonage and VMware. We expect these executives to position Vonage and VMware well to succeed in the near future, given their emphasis on the growing markets of unified communications and collaboration (UCC), the cloud, and the digital workplace, which are all seeing growth. While it is unclear how the executive changes will affect Vonage’s patterns of acquisitions, and uncertain exactly how VMware’s marketing strategy will shift, these executive moves are part of the circle of life in Silicon Valley.