CRN Exclusive: Okta Lands New Global Channel Chief, Looks To Fortify Ties With ISVs, Digital Agencies


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Okta has snagged former Gigya global channel chief Patrick McCue to help gain a foothold with digital agencies and drive partnerships between SIs and ISVs.  

The San Francisco-based enterprise identity vendor also brought in longtime SAP corporate development leader Monty Gray to spearhead Okta's corporate development objectives. The hires come less than a year after Okta raised $187 million through an IPO valuing the company at $1.5 billion.

"I've been impressed by how much they've been able to accomplish," Gray told CRN. "We view the identity market as growing and expanding beyond what we're doing now."

[Related: Okta Goes Public In First Big Cybersecurity IPO Of The Year]

One of McCue's biggest goals coming out of the gate is expanding beyond solution providers focused on security and compliance and into agencies focused on digital transformation. Okta wants to ensure that it's at the forefront with digital agencies as identity and security tie into more of what those partners are doing, McCue said.

Okta has historically been strong with the security and compliance businesses at consultancies like Accenture and Deloitte, McCue said, but contact with Accenture Interactive or Deloitte Digital has been much more limited. McCue said Okta would like to form stronger bonds with that side of the organization, as well as striking up new relationships with pure-play digital agencies.   

McCue also hopes to bring Okta's ISV and SI groups together to allow for better collaboration and make it easier for end customers that work with both an ISV and an implementation house. Instead of having two people in each region supporting these partner types separately, McCue said Okta will now ensure its regional reps understand both go-to-market motions.

Okta plans to onboard different types of ISVs focused in areas other than CRM and ERP, to help identify additional areas where the company's technology would be complementary, McCue said. The company has been continuously building single sign-on integration with different industries and technologies, McCue said. Okta hopes ISVs can help leverage those integrations in their areas of expertise.  

In addition to bringing the company into new areas of expertise, McCue said Okta's partner community could give the company feet on the street in geographies where there isn't a brick-and-mortar footprint. Okta has offices in North America, London and Australia, and McCue said the company hopes to leverage partners to drive growth in Continental Europe, Asia and Latin America.

A more robust base of European and Asian partners will also make it easier for Okta to support end users in their local language, McCue said.

"We're looking to extend the success we've already had in place," McCue said. "It allows us to scale in that area."

As senior vice president of worldwide partners, McCue will be responsible for forging new partnerships in a broad array of verticals and geographies and reports to Charles Race, president of worldwide field operations. His first day was Feb. 5.

Gray, meanwhile, will be responsible for corporate development, strategic partners and strategy and execution across the Okta Integration Network (OIN) as senior vice president of corporate development. Gray started Jan. 29, and reports to co-founder and COO Frederic Kerrest.

Following nearly two decades at 90,000-person SAP, Gray said he has a good grasp of how Okta should think about markets and the next stage of growth. At the same time, Gray said it's typically easier for employees at more modestly-sized organizations like Okta to comprehend the company's bigger picture.

"Everyone has the ability to play different roles at a smaller company," Gray said.        

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