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By | Paul Kunert 29th October 2013 22:59

Insight inserts Microsoft vet Ebermann into top EMEA slot

Who better to navigate Microsoft's channel changes than a Microsoftie...oh hang on

Insight Enterprises is set to fill the void left by former EMEA president Stuart Fenton with Microsoft veteran Wolfgang Ebermann.

After 22 years at the software titan, most recently as veep and COO for central Eastern Europe, Ebermann will rock up at Insight on 6 January.

In a PR blurb, CEO Ken Lamneck, said in typical corporate fashion that he is incredibly "excited" about the new exec recruit.

"He has an established history of driving operational excellence and delivering growth in the mid-market and enterprise space across a multi-country footprint in Europe," said Lamneck.

Ebermann will "undoubtedly help define and grow our EMEA business' competitive position in 2014 and beyond," the statement continued.

His arrival comes amid a period of change at Insight that started with the exit of Fenton who quit in April after more than a decade in charge, and more recently other high level execs departures including Tony Brooker and Gary Butters.

The choice of EMEA leader by Insight, one of Microsoft's largest enterprise channel partners, comes as the vendor makes multiple sweeping changes to its channel programmes for the second time in two years.

The word on the street is the changes will wipe up to 50 per cent from the fees paid out to transactional resellers. Clearly the board expects Ebermann to bring some magic beans inside knowledge to the table.

Ironically, one of the major challenges facing Insight is its exposure to Microsoft as more than 50 per cent of EMEA revenues comes from software licensing, and the vast majority of that is based on Windows etc.

Insight has in the past, on more than one occasion bemoaned the changes to the fee structure that a major software vendor partner was introducing.

Microsoft keeps on telling world + dog that it is now a 'devices and services' company, but Insight is also under pressure to transform, albeit from high volume low margin kit operation into a services provider.

Services account for very low single digit revenues at Insight Europe and surely this will be one of the strategic priorities facing Ebermann - to build a portfolio and wrestle control of its destiny from the whim of a vendor. ®

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