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Symantec changes its channel chief

Randy Cochran is out as Channel Chief and John Eldh is in

Long time industry veteran Randy Cochran is no longer the Symantec Corp. (NASDAQ: SYMC) channel chief for the Americas region.

Cochran has been running Symantec’s channel business since late 2008 when he replaced Julie Parrish.

His replacement is John Eldh, the vice-president of sales for Symantec’s cloud business. In the role, Eldh was intrumental in developing a go-to-market strategy that relied heavily on channel partners.

Very little is known about Eldh. He has been at Symantec for just seven years holding various titles, such as was regional vice president of UK/Ireland and the Nordics. Eldh also led the sales team for Symantec’s largest region in EMEA.

One of the more interesting aspects of Eldh’s resume was his 15 years at Gartner Group, but that was only in sales. He was never a Gartner market analyst.

As for Cochran, Symantec released a letter to channel partners saying he was pursuing other opportunities that were unnamed. He spent eight years inside Symantec’s channel organization.

The letter was written by Rich Spring, Symantec’s senior vice-president, Americas sales. In the letter, Spring told channel partners that under Eldh’s leadership Symantec will put forth a relentless focus on driving growth in the Americas by leveraging the strength of the partner ecosystem. “We are excited about the new opportunities and leadership strength that John brings to this role. Our goal is to build on the foundation of our partnership with you. Symantec continues to be a channel-led company, with the majority of our business flowing through you – our partners.”

As for Eldh new job very little will change. He will still be responsible for Symantec’s enterprise channel strategy, as well as partner programs for all market segments, including: SMB, mid-market, public sector, VARs, managed service providers, national partners, and distribution.

This announcement marks the second channel leadership change from a security vendor since the beginning of the year. In January, Gavin Struthers took over as new worldwide channel chief for McAfee replacing Alex Thurber, who left to become a senior vice-president at Tripwire Inc. of Portland, Ore.