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New ConnectWise CEO Jason Magee: 10 Things to Know

Amid Thoma Bravo’s acquisition of ConnectWise, Jason Magee will succeed Arnie Bellini as CEO of the Tampa, Florida-based business management software provider. Bellini becomes an advisor to Magee, who previously was president and COO of ConnectWise.

ConnectWise CEO Jason Magee

At first glance, it’s a tectonic executive shift in the MSP-centric software market. Bellini, after all, co-founded the business nearly four decades ago and helped to pioneer the SMB-centric managed IT services market.

But take a closer look, and you’ll discover that Magee has been running ConnectWise’s day-to-day operations for several years. He’s well-known and highly regarded both inside ConnectWise and across the company’s partner base — including MSPs and technology alliance partners.

New ConnectWise CEO Jason Magee: 10 Things to Know

For those seeking a bit more on Magee’s background, experience, management style and commitment to partners — here are 10 things to know.

1. When will ConnectWise officially transition the CEO position from Bellini to Magee?

ConnectWise will announce the CEO transition to employees and the market on Monday, February 25. It’s effective immediately. Bellini becomes an advisor to ConnectWise and Magee.

2. What is Magee’s management style and view of partners — especially compared to Bellini’s approach to business?

Magee and Bellini generally share the same views and thoughts in terms of ConnectWise’s strategic direction, and the company’s fanatical commitment to partner success. But their management styles, no doubt, are different. As Magee said during a ChannelE2E interview:

“I’m not Arnie. But we share similar thoughts. I just work through those thoughts a little more methodically. It’s like understanding the difference between Captain Kirk and Captain Picard. Arnie is more like Kirk. I’m more like Picard.”

3. What is Magee’s background at ConnectWise?

Magee joined ConnectWise in 2011. Prior to becoming CEO, he was president and COO, overseeing corporate strategy, operations, and procurement, as well as the product, customer success and the IT Nation teams. Generally speaking, ConnectWise’s closest MSP, technology and channel partners know Magee extremely well.

4. What specific titles has Magee previously held at ConnectWise?

According to his LinkedIn profile, Magee’s earlier roles included:

  • President (2018-2019)
  • Chief Operating Officer (2016-2019)
  • Executive Vice President, Strategy and Acquisitions (2015-2016)
  • Vice President, Worldwide Channels & Alliances (2014-2015)
  • Vice President, Worldwide Channel Sales (2014-2015)
  • Director, Worldwide Channel (2011-2014)

5. What is Magee’s experience beyond North America?

Magee led ConnectWise’s international expansion into the United Kingdom and Australia, and the company’s EcoSystems business.

6. What is Magee’s M&A experience?

Magee led the the strategy team responsible for several key ConnectWise acquisitions, including ScreenConnect (now known as ConnectWise Control) and HTG Peer Groups (now known as IT Nation Evolve).

7. What is Magee’s expertise as ConnectWise pushes into cybersecurity?

Magee also led the strategy team responsible for ConnectWise acquiring Sienna Group (for MSSP services). And he led ConnectWise’s investment in Perch Security, a cybersecurity firm.

8. How did ConnectWise select Magee to succeed Bellini as CEO?

ConnectWise Founder Arnie Bellini

In an interview last week with ChannelE2E, Bellini described the succession process as follows:

“There were three internal candidates. They’ve known about the CEO transition for the past year. And they each pursued the position. It wasn’t about competing with each other to get the job. It was about working with each of them to prepare them for new responsibilities. They took high impact leadership classes. They each had curriculum for their specific journey. Jason won the position. He was the obvious choice, given his deep knowledge of the MSP and VAR space. He was a VAR. He is from our space. He’s cut from the cloth of our partners.”

9. What is Magee’s experience beyond ConnectWise?

Magee has more than 20 years of technology, sales channel management and IT market experience. As ConnectWise puts it, his career has been “immersed in the world of MSPs and VARs.”

Before joining ConnectWise, Magee held director-level positions at CA Technologies, managing teams, channel partners, strategic alliances and marketing budgets. There he built and launched various programs, partner incentives, and vendor initiatives. Earlier on, he spent five years gaining industry and channel experience at reseller companies Interactive Futures and Global Computers, where he held sales, marketing, and product management positions.

Magee is serving his second consecutive year on CompTIA’s board of directors, after joining the board in February 2018. He grew up in New York and has an MBA from Clarkson University.

10. What is Magee’s Day One message to employees and partners?

In an interview with ChannelE2E, Magee said:

“The message is that our passion for partners continues. It’s part of our five-year plan. It’s one of the reasons that Thoma Bravo wanted to acquire us. They like our unique partner focus. They like our commitment to everything as a service. And they like our commitment to IT Nation.”

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2 Comments

Comments

    Arlin Sorensen:

    JP

    Just a little color commentary on the new CEO at ConnectWise. I’ve had the privilege of knowing Jason Magee for many years, and have been working with him and for him for the past 14 months. There are a few things I can say unequivocally about him that sets the tone for the future based on my experience:

    – first and foremost, the HTG acquisition by ConnectWise 1-1-18 happened because of his leadership and commitment to the IT Nation
    – he definitely is not Arnie, but has his own style and approach to leadership which will be a great fit for the company moving forward
    – he sees the landscape broadly, not always verbalizing what he sees yet quietly on top of it all, and has a clear vision about the future and how ConnectWise will be an industry leader in it
    – when he speaks, we all need to listen. He uses far less words, but what he says always matters
    – he is disciplined in his leadership and not prone to chasing shiny objects or making quick decisions. Numbers are his friend.
    – he says what he will do, but more importantly he does what he says

    I became an employee after 40 years in business to be part of the company led by Arnie Bellini.

    I’m staying as an employee in this crazy industry so I can be part of the company led by Jason Magee.

    A big thanks to Arnie for his leadership and helping pioneer this industry. He also gets kudos for showing us how legacy is done right.

    Great days are ahead for ConnectWise and the IT Nation with Jason at the helm. I encourage people to get to know him if you don’t. You’re gonna hear his name a lot as we carve out the future with the colleagues, partners and solution providers that are part of our ecosystem. Buckle in as we’re ready to hit warp speed!

    Joe Panettieri:

    Arlin: Thank you for always painting a vivid picture for us. I really appreciate it, as do our readers.
    -jp

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