Mark Dodds, the No. 2 executive at Microsoft Canada and the vice-president of small-to-mid-market solutions and partners (SMS&P), is no longer with the Mississauga, Ont.-based software vendor, CDN has learned from multiple sources.
Those same sources expressed shock and surprise at the suddenness of the departure, given that Dodds was hand-picked for the position by Microsoft Canada president Max Long.
Contacted for comment, Long offered a brief statement via email: “At this moment we have no further comments regarding any changes at Microsoft Canada.”
Later, a Microsoft Canada official said that the company does not comment on personnel matters.
However, changes have been made, at least in the interim, as CDN has learned Microsoft Canada CFO Brian Armstrong has taken over Dodds’s duties, at least for for now.
Dodds’s departure comes at an inconvenient time, as the subsidiary pilots a merger between its two channel groups: the Enterprise Partner Group (EPG) and the SMS&P group. The plan is for EPG to join forces with the partner sales team in SMS&P, and Dodds was spearheading this, not just for Microsoft Canada, but for the parent company as well.
The suddenness of the departure has also soured some channel partners on Microsoft Canada. Several have told CDN that working with Microsoft Canada has become increasingly difficult because of the constant turnover in leadership in recent years.
Dodds becomes one of many senior Microsoft Canada leaders to exit the subsidiary recently. Others include former president Eric Gales, who is now the president of VMware Canada, and former channel chiefs Corinne Sharp and Lora Gernon. Last summer, former SMS&P chief for Canada Neil Tanner also left the company.
Dodds is a U.K. executive that ran Microsoft’s public sector business before joining Microsoft Canada. He was based in Redmond, Wash., and had recently moved to Canada for the SMS&P job.
At the time of his hire last September, Long said of Dodds: “Mark is a smart guy, bringing very relevant experience and a global perspective. I’m thrilled to have him.”
The turnover in channel executives hasn’t just impacted Microsoft. Dodds’ departure follows the exits of other high-ranking channel executives, such as Jas Sahota of VMware Canada and Ned D’Antonio of McAfee Canada. Both Sahota and D’Antonio exited their respective companies this past February.