Former iSeries Chief Moves To Software Sales

Former IBM channel maven and iSeries server division head Mike Borman has been tapped as vice president of sales for all of Big Blue's Software Group.

January 5, 2005

2 Min Read
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What would the new year be without more corporate executive changes at IBM?

The latest switcheroo should at least put a smile on the faces of IBM business partners. Former IBM channel maven Mike Borman, who just six months ago was plucked from his job as general manager of IBM global business partners to oversee Big Blue's somewhat-ailing iSeries server division, has been tapped as vice president of sales for all of IBM Software Group. He fills the vacancy left when John Swainson said goodbye to IBM in late November to become president and CEO of Computer Associates.

Putting Borman in this sales role helps to ensure that a channel-savvy, partner-focused executive is heading up IBM Software's 16,000 global sales, marketing and technical employees. Borman is well-regarded by IBM business partners and credited with putting some real meat on the company's PartnerWorld programs.

Commenting on Borman's short tenure running iSeries, an IBM spokesperson today said that Borman had successfully overseen that group's transition from the P4 server architecture to the P5 systems. Now, said the spokesperson, iSeries is looking for a marketing guru to take it forward.

That person is Mark Shearer, who takes the helm as iSeries general manager. Shearer most recently served as vice president of marketing and strategy for IBM's Systems and Technology Group, under vice president Bill Zeitler. In the iSeries role, he will continue to report to Zeitler.Shearer's replacement is Maureen McGuire, who is a familiar name to partners as well. McGuire was most recently vice president of strategy and marketing for IBM Global Services and her prior roles at the company have involved channels marketing.

Borman will enjoy no honeymoon as he embarks on his new role. IBM's annual internal sales kickoff meetings span a couple of weeks this month in Las Vegas. Last January marked the first time that business partners played a significant role in those crucial planning sessions, and Borman is credited with pushing for their inclusion. Partners are expected to participate again this year.

There's no doubt that it has been a tumultuous six months at IBM. Borman's move from channels to iSeries in July was just one major executive shift at the time. Within the software group alone, partners saw Swainson move from general manager of the application-integration middleware brand to assume the software sales job. Tivoli general manager Robert LeBlanc took over Swainson's middleware post while Al Zollar, who ceded iSeries to Borman, moved into the Tivoli role.

Borman's replacement in the channel role last July was Donn Atkins, who still holds the top partner job. Ironically, Atkins had been head of software sales, the job Borman now holds.

Did we mention IBM is selling its PC division? Stay tuned. Pop quiz next week.0

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