Infinidat has appointed a head of product who reports direct to the executive chairman. What does it mean for Kariel Sandler, co-CEO who runs R&D and Operations? And what does it mean for the co-CEO structure that the high-end storage array vendor put in place in the wake of a funding round and subsequent departure of the company’s founder CEO?
Shahar Bar-Or is the incoming chief product officer and general manager of Infinidat’s Israel operations. He joins the company from Western Digital where he was VP for embedded engineering and Israel site manager.
His responsibilities include R&D, quality assurance and validation, product innovations, operations and IT.
Infinidat executive chairman Boaz Chalamish, beamed: “In Shahar, we have exceptional talent to steer our product teams globally and at our Israeli headquarters. He has the best mix of leadership skills, expertise, experience and drive to help Infinidat reach its ambitious growth targets and move forward in strategic innovation.”
Infinidat promoted CFO Nir Simon and COO Kariel Sandler as co-CEOs in May following a D-series round involving existing investors. Chalamish, previously CEO of Clarizen, a project management software company, was installed as exec chairman.
The amount raised was undisclosed, but the price included the demotion and subsequent departure of founder-CEO Moshe Yanai. He was shown the door by the Infinidat board in June because of poor business performance, according to the Israeli publication Calcalist.
In B&F’s view, Bar-Or’s reporting line effectively makes Chalamish de facto CEO.
We think that the co-CEO structure is no longer stable. The two co-CEOs neither have control over product strategy nor the entire Israel operation, which somewhat diminishes their responsibilities.
We asked Infinidat if this reporting structure effectively makes Chalamish the CEO? And if Simon and Sandler will revert to their CFO and COO roles respectively? Also, we noted that Bar-Or is a flash memory exec and asked if his appointment meant that Infinidat products will make greater use of flash memory?
We got a non-answer: “This is an organisational decision on the reporting structure by Infinidat.”
We also asked why Boaz Chalamish is not listed on Infinidat’s leadership webpage in the board of directors section? We said we assumed this is just an oversight and not a message that he is leaving. Understandably, there was no reply to our impertinent suggestion.