'One Microsoft' strikes again with latest partner, services reorg

Microsoft's nearly four-year-old 'One Microsoft' strategy is continuing to evolve with the company's latest reorg affecting its sales, partner and services teams.
Written by Mary Jo Foley, Senior Contributing Editor

Microsoft is continuing its push to consolidate its various product and services groups with another reorg, which company officials are announcing today, January 5.


The latest moves -- which will take effect February 1 -- will affect the company's sales, partner and services teams which are under the Worldwide Commercial Business group, led by executive vice president Judson Althoff.

In July 2016, following the departure of Microsoft chief operating officer Kevin Turner, Microsoft took another step along its "One Microsoft" road by integrating its sales and marketing organizations across the company. As part of those moves, Althoff was given responsibility for overseeing Microsoft's Worldwide Commercial Business, which included the Enterprise & Partner Group (EPG), Public Sector, Small and Mid-Market Solutions and Partners (SMS&P), Developer Experience (DX), and Services.

Now Althoff seems to be ready to put more of his stamp on the Commercial Business.

As part of the reorg being announced today, Microsoft is combining its EPG and SMS&P businesses. Chris Weber, current corporate vice president of midmarket solutions and partners, will lead the combined businesses. (Before last July, Weber was the corporate VP of Mobile Device Sales for the company.)

Microsoft also is creating what officials have christened the "One Commercial Partner" business, which will combine the various partner teams inside the company. This group will be led by Ron Huddleston, corporate vice president of Enterprise Partner Ecosystem for Microsoft. Huddleston joined Microsoft from Salesforce last June. Huddleston is credited with playing a major role in building Salesforce's AppExchange marketplace and its cloud-based channel, OEM and ISV program.

According to Microsoft's announcement, Kim Akers and the ISV team, Victor Morales and the Enterprise Partner team, and Gavriella Schuster and the WPG team will all be moving into One Commercial Partner.

Microsoft also is creating a new unit called Microsoft Digital that's meant to focus more on getting Microsoft customers and partners to build on and use Microsoft's various cloud products. This team will be led by Anand Eswaran, corporate vice president of Microsoft Services, who will continue to lead Microsoft Services, as well. Microsoft Digital will include Microsoft evangelists, developers and "digital advisors and architects" who can be assigned to customers as needed.

Microsoft is combining the Worldwide Public Sector and Industry Businesses as part of the reorg, with the combined entity being led by corporate vice president Toni Townes-Whitley. The Dynamics organization business under Althoff will continue to be led by corporate vice President Frank Holland.

Will this latest reorg result in layoffs? When I asked, a company spokesperson said: "There are no layoffs as a part of today's announcement. Like all companies, Microsoft reviews its resources and investments on an ongoing basis."

Microsoft's "One Microsoft" campaign kicked off under former CEO Steve Ballmer back in 2013. The original idea of that push was to break down divisional silos and build more synergies across teams inside the company. Today's "One Commercial Partner" announcement is a continuation of that vision.

Microsoft announced late last year that it is renaming its Worldwide Partner Conference as "Microsoft Inspire," which will be held from July 9 to July 13 in Washington, DC. Registration for the partner show is open already.

In the name of One Microsoft, Microsoft also opted to combine some of its internally focused events. Microsoft's MGX sales conference, TechReady, and the Solution Specialist Sales Summit (S4) will be a single event happening in Las Vegas, the week of July 17, 2017, I've heard from my contacts.

Editorial standards