VMware's operating chief Eschenbach departs: Key points for IT buyers

In recent weeks, three key VMware executives have departed. The company's bench is deep, but enterprise buyers need to monitor the turnover.
Written by Larry Dignan, Contributor

VMware's executive suite continues to evolve as the company's parent EMC moves closer to being acquired by Dell.

In the latest reshuffle, VMware said Carl Eschenbach, chief operating officer, will resign "to pursue a new career opportunity." Fortune reported that Eschenbach will land as a venture capitalist at Sequoia Capital.

The move comes after CFO Jonathan Chadwick left the company. VMware also said it would restructure when it announced Chadwick. Zane Rowe, EMC's CFO and former exec at Apple and UnitedContinental, took over as VMware's financial lead today.

Toss in the departure of Martin Casado, head of VMWare's NSX business, to Andreessen Horowitz and the virtualization leader has quite the revolving door going.

VMware split the duties of Eschenbach among several executives. Maurizio Carli will be executive vice president of worldwide sales. Carli led VMware's Americas region. Peter McCay will take over the Americas field operation. Roy O'Farrell, CTO, will now oversee VMware's customer experience. And Sanjay Poonen, who runs VMware's end-user computing unit, will lead marketing and communications too.

Previously: Dell, EMC deal could bolster Microsoft vs. VMware | Dell buys EMC for $67 billion: Will bigger be better?

All of the executive changes are effective April 1.

Here are a few thoughts about what a tech buyer should make of VMware's executive moves:

  • VMware still maintains a dominant position even if it is restructuring and pruning ahead of the EMC-Dell merger.
  • For now, VMware has a deep bench, but the item to watch will be how the customer experience and sales process changes with the departure of Eschenbach.
  • The departure of Casado may be a bigger deal in the future given the importance of NSX to VMware.
  • While high-level executive departures are notable, what matters more will be VMware's ability to keep account reps that enterprises work with consistently.

VMware's outlook remains solid.

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