Commvault tackles endemic under-performance with sales exec refresh

Commvault has appointed APJ and EMEA territory heads, as chief revenue officer Ricardo Di Blasio puts his own hires in the top sales spots. The enterprise data protection vendor wants to put an end to endemic sales under-performance.

The new recruits are Callum Eade, VP Asia Pacific Japan, who joins from VMware where he was APJ VP, software and defined data centre; and Marco Fanizzi, VP EMEA, previously head of Dell Italy.

Di Blasio said in a canned quote: “The industry’s most successful people are recognising the opportunity ahead of us. We’re focused on the needs of our partners and customers and our objectives are clear – simplify, innovate and execute. This is a new Commvault.”

Callum Eade (left) and Mario Fanizzi

CEO Sanjay Mirchandani, hired from Puppet Labs to replace retiring CEO Bob Hammer in March last year, presided over two disappointing quarters. The most recent quarter ended September 30, 2019 suggests things could be getting better.

Di Blasio joined the firm in May 2019 and his career highlights include global head of sales for VMware Cloud Platform Services at DXC Technology, CEO at Globetouch, COO at Cohesity, and SVP sales and marketing at VMware and EMC.

He wants Commvault’s sales to make a greater impact everywhere in its sales territories, its global accounts, and through its channels. He has initiated a wave of new exec appointments, including Anthony Faustini, VP of global accounts; Mercer Rowe, global head of channels; David Boyle, VP Sales for the Americas; David Wigglesworth, head of Hedvig global sales.

That’s seven new sales heads including Di Blasio. The team now has to deliver.

Sales execution issue history

Commvault has struggled with sales execution for several years. Each attempt to solve the problem has turned into a short-lived Band-Aid needing a fresh fix. Here are some examples of sales issues from the past:

  • Q1 2015 – Commvault reported a depressing set of results as sales headcount and mid-market product and pricing strategy faux pas cause a stumble – another stumble, as first quarter results were poor too
  • Q4 fy2017 – After three quarters of losses, Commvault made a $3.2m profit in its final fiscal 2017 quarter, just enough to tip the full year into profit.
  • Q4 fy2018 – CEO Bob Hammer said: “We know we can and must do more in order to return the company to sustainable, profitable growth.”
  • Q1 Fy2019 – analyst quote: “It is clear that the company continues to have execution/competitive risks.”