Channel chiefs, Channel partner events, Channel partner programs, CSPs

Zscaler Appoints New Channel Chief


Cloud security vendor Zscaler has appointed its new channel chief.

The company appointed Karl Soderlund as its senior vice president, worldwide partners and alliances. Soderlund will be responsible for advancing and modernizing the Zscaler partner program by developing and executing a competitive go-to-market strategy and leading the company’s channel team, Zscaler said.

Soderlund joins Zscaler from Palo Alto Networks, where he served as a senior vice president. Prior to Palo Alto Networks, Soderlund also held senior roles at Aruba Networks, Avaya, HP, Cisco Systems, and Fortinet.

Zscaler’s partner program–which is comprised of systems integrators, managed service providers, solution providers, and distributors–is responsible for delivering 95% of the company’s business.

Zscaler’s New Channel Chief

Karl Soderlund, Senior Vice President, Worldwide Partners, and Alliances, Zscaler
Karl Soderlund, senior vice president, worldwide partners and alliances, Zscaler

Dali Rajic, COO, Zscaler, commented on the news:

“As the leader in cloud security, Zscaler continues to become a destination for top talent. Karl’s deep partner expertise and proven track record with the execution of highly strategic partner programs at top networking and cybersecurity companies demonstrates that he is the right industry veteran to take our channel partner program to the next level. As we continue to make meaningful investments in our partner model, I am excited to welcome Karl to the company and am confident that his contributions will deliver results and support company growth.”

Karl Soderlund said:

“Zscaler is an innovator and leader in cloud security that has consistently delivered on the promise of zero trust while redefining network security with the world’s largest inline cloud security platform. With a total addressable market of $72B, it was a clear choice to join Zscaler. I look forward to bringing my experience to dramatically elevate Zscaler’s partner program.”

Zscaler’s Growing Pains

The appointment comes just days after the San Jose, California-based cloud security vendor announced a round of layoffs following what it called a rough fiscal second quarter.

Despite doubling the size of its workforce over the preceding 18 months, Zscaler laid off 3% of its 5,900 employees. The company cited “increased deliberation from new customers around large purchasing decisions in January 2023 led to reduced billings growth.”