Former Microsoft Channel Chief gets a new job

When last we saw Jon Roskill he was transitioning out of the Microsoft channel chief role; making way for former Microsoft Canada president Phil Sorgen.

Today CDN has learned from a blog post Roskill wrote that he is the new CEO of Microsoft channel partner Acumatica of Kirkland, Wash.

Acumatica is a Cloud ERP and accounting software provider and Roskill described leaving Microsoft after 20 years to joining this company as a five-month period of discovery.

What Roskill wanted to do after Microsoft was take time off but two companies approached him. The first company he said started with a “G”, more than likely Google, but Acumatica got him excited because it was a channel partner.

“It is all about critical mass and getting to scale on things. I also knew that I wanted to work with business software. Throw in the fact I’ve always loved working with partners, and it was a no-brainer when Acumatica approached me. I was certainly curious from the beginning,” Roskill said in his blog.

Joining the ERP rat race will be a tough challenge for Roskill. He will now have to content with fierce competitors such as NetSuite, Microsoft, SAP and even savvy but small Sage. But he has his reason. In fact, he listed three:

  • Firstly, this is a US$60-billion market that is growing. ERP, at its core, helps people run their businesses, and run them more efficiently, more creatively, and more “insert-your-own-adjective.” Even if you can capture one percent of this market, that’s US$600 million.
  • Secondly, it’s time to shake up the business management software marketplace. Clearly, we are going through a technology paradigm shift. Whenever there is such a transition, there are winners and there are losers. Acumatica, built from the ground up for the Cloud, is a natural disruptor.
  • Lastly, but no less important, is the channel. As a long-time channel builder, I’m especially passionate about Acumatica’s 100-percent commitment to going to market with and through its partners.

What I found interesting about Roskill’s new company is that they have a subsidiary in Moscow of all places and Mexico, but not one in Canada. And, given that their headquarters in Kirkland is only a hop, skip and a jump to Vancouver, B.C. (under 200 KM) it’s surprising. But maybe that changes now that Roskill is on board.

One quick hit before I go. Friend of CDN Kevin Murai, the president and CEO of Synnex Corp. was appointed vice-chairman of the Global Technology Distribution Council (GTDC). The GTDC is an industry association for the world’s leading technology distributors.

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Jim Love, Chief Content Officer, IT World Canada

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Paolo Del Nibletto
Paolo Del Nibletto
Former editor of Computer Dealer News, covering Canada's IT channel community.

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