Nick Tidd is pinching himself

I had a chance to talk to Nick Tidd, a day after being named new president for D-Link in North America.

The former 3Com veteran is incredible happy at the opportunity he has in front of him.

He will be moving full time to California; Huntington Beach, Calif., to be exact. Not bad for the Burlington, Ont. native.

He told me that he had to pinch himself several times to make sure his new situation wasn’t just a dream. Last Saturday, for example, Tidd biked to the golf course for a round of 18 and then headed to the local Starbucks all-the-while enjoying spectacular views of the beach.

Tidd is also fortunate to be surrounded by Canadians in his new home. Jeff Volpe of Viewsonic and Kevin Murai of Synnex live close by. Tidd has also brought on a few other Canadian executives to be part of his channel team. Former Symantec and Alternative Technology executive Terry Sedgley (now West) and Phyllis McCullagh (formerly with Gateway and CompTIA) will also be close by.

Tidd told me he has been giddy about his new career opportunity and CDN is happy for him. But, as they say: In the U.S. they eat their young. Tidd have lofty revenue goals for 2010 for D-Link. Tidd said that he is comfortable with the high expectations.

And, if you look at the networking landscape as it stands today, you can see why he might be.

There has never been so much tumult in the networking market. You have Nortel’s collapse, a feud between HP and Cisco, and acquisitions up the ying-yang. I don’t think channel partners and customers really know which end is up when it comes to all these companies in this market space. This kind of commotion where all the major players are jockeying for position could result in a new leader for the category. Who knows it maybe D-Link? I’m not saying it will, but consider this. Companies such as Avaya, HP and Cisco are struggling to get their house in order mainly because of huge acquisitions. In Cisco’s case it’s more about getting some traction for the Unified Communications Systems platform. This battle maybe even more interesting since Tidd will be pitted against another fellow Canadian Rob Lloyd of Cisco. I wonder if Lloyd is in Tidd's neighbourhood?

Don’t get me wrong here. Tidd has a huge challenge in front of him. D-Link is known as a consumer company predominately. Tidd’s task is to change that market perception. D-Link’s goal is to succeed in the enterprise space as well as the carrier space. That is a tall order, but it might happen. Who knows? Tidd is not saddled with a large integration project such HP with 3Com. Nor does he have to convince channel partners on a new platform strategy. It's been business as usual for D-Link for the most part.

One aspect of the new market dynamic that may turn out to be Tidd's ace in the hole is that customers have to look for better value options in the market place today. The poor economy has really forced customers and solution providers to consider the alternative. D-Link does have an enterprise-class portfolio. Maybe, just maybe Tidd is giddy about the growth possibilities D-Link has on the horizon and not so much the gorgeous sunshine in his new American home.

Two quick hits before I go. I want to give a shout out to Rick Reid, president of Tech Data Canada. He’s not feeling so good these days. Hope you get healthy soon.

Mark Ciprietti has left Insight Canada to join D-Link Canada as its new vice president and GM of business solutions sales for D-Link Canada. This is a tough loss for Insight Canada for sure, but CDN wishes Ciprietti all the best at D-Link.

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