Westcon-Comstor’s managing director in Australia, David Gage, is set to leave his role later this month, with the distributor’s vice president of vendor alliances for Asia Pacific, Phil Cameron, stepping into the local leadership role.
Gage, former Express Data CEO and ARN Hall of Fame inductee, took charge of the distributor’s operations in Australia in March last year.
"Dave brings a track record of proven results across the entire spectrum of the Australian channel and he has demonstrated outstanding strategic and commercial capabilities in a variety of roles," Westcon-Comstor Asia Pacific executive vice president, Patrick Aronson, said at the time.
With over 20 years of industry expertise and knowledge, Gage joined the industry in the late 1990s as Queensland state manager for Express Data, before helping craft Express Online, one of the first channel online marketplaces in the early 2000s.
Gage told ARN that the decision to leave his role with the distributor comes as he reaches a point where he has achieved many of the goals that were set for him when he took on the role.
"The job I was brought on to perform, to turn the business around and restructure, I feel like I’ve achieved," he said. “I’m really happy with the progress that was made over the last 12 months. It was a period of transformation for the business.
"We restructured, bringing on fantastic new staff. We’re better at addressing the market, and our market share with all our vendors has improved significantly."
Gage now plans to look for “other opportunities” in the industry following his departure.
Prior to joining Westcon-Comstor, Gage worked as a consultant to various venture capital and private equity organisations with interests in the local IT industry.
From late 2013 to late 2015, he held the role of Microsoft small and midmarket solutions and partners (SMS&P) director.
Gage has also done time with Dimension Data and its former subsidiary, Dimension Data Learning Solutions, in addition to being CEO of Express Data from 2011 to 2013.
As he prepares to depart, Gage said he has high hopes for Cameron's success in the role.
"Phil’s a great guy, we’ve worked closely together, I’ve worked with him a great deal on a transition plan, and I’ll do everything I can to make sure he’s successful," Gage added.
Cameron held the role of Westcon Group’s vendor alliances director for Australia and New Zealand before becoming Westcon-Comstor Asia’s APAC vendor alliances vice president.
Before joining Westcon Group, Cameron – also an ARN Hall of Fame inductee – was the director of IBM’s Business Partner Organisation in A/NZ, a role he held for more than four years after a short, year-long stint as CA Technologies’ vice president, Asia Pacific/Japan channel sales, within the company’s Internet Security Business Unit.
Cameron also spent several years as Lenovo’s managing director in A/NZ and IBM’s A/NZ channel manager. Before joining IBM, Cameron spent over two decades as Toshiba’s national sales manager in A/NZ.
As reported by ARN in August last year, Gage outlined how the distributor has been refocusing its efforts across the channel.
“Services is a huge investment area for us currently,” he explained at the time. “And there’s several components to services, such as logistics and running projects for partners. We're moving heavily into professional services, not to compete with our partners but to be complementary.”
Specific to services, Gage said he saw two opportunities in the year ahead.
“There’s lower-level services where we have the capability to carry them out at scale which means we can be more efficient which actually represents a margin opportunity for partners,” he explained.
“And then if you look at high-level, bleeding edge technology, for a lot of partners it’s difficult to invest early."
In early June last year, Synnex Corporation revealed plans to become a minority shareholder in the Asia Pacific business of Westcon-Comstor, alongside outright acquisitions of the distributor’s Americas business.
According to Gage, the distributor’s partnership with Synnex Corporation was expected to facilitate Westcon-Comstor's hunt for new vendors, and is plans to bolster offerings around core technologies such as security, unified communications and data centre.
“We also have global vendor agreements in place but it’s incredibly important to have local support and a clear understanding of the value you can provide at a local level,” he added.