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Lexmark Hires Lenovo Channel Chief Sammy Kinlaw

Sammy Kinlaw

Lexmark has hired Lenovo veteran Sammy Kinlaw as VP, worldwide channel and OEM sales, effective February 1, 2018, the printer giant confirmed today. Lenovo confirmed Kinlaw’s resignation earlier this week.

“Lexmark is making significant investments in our channel business,” said Brock Saladin, Lexmark senior VP and chief revenue officer, a prepared statement. “We are pleased to welcome Sammy, a recognized industry leader, to lead our outstanding team.”

“I am thrilled to join the Lexmark team,” Kinlaw said in a prepared statement. “Lexmark is committed to growth in the commercial channel, an area I was able to grow at both IBM and Lenovo. This strategy, combined with Lexmark’s world class products and leadership, made the role a once in a lifetime opportunity.”

Rob Cato

Kinlaw developed a strong reputation with Lenovo’s channel partners. But the hardware giant struggled over the past year amid intense competition in the PC market. Also, Lenovo’s push into servers and hyperconverged data centers has been an uphill battle. Amid Kinlaw’s departure, Lenovo has named Rob Cato interim North America channel chief, and the company is now gearing up for its Lenovo Accelerate 2018 partner conference in May.

Meanwhile, Lexmark has faced its own set of challenges. The company in August 2017 announced plans to cut 700 employees or 7 percent of its workforce over the next year in order to realign for growth opportunities. Kinlaw is set to compete again with old nemesis HP Inc., which recently acquired Samsung’s printer business while also gearing up for a 3D printer push.

PS: Special thanks to a source close to Lexmark who told me to expect this.

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