Zerto’s first Canadian country manager outlines strategy for expansion

Sasha Acosta has expanded both sales and sales engineer staff in Canada since his January appointment, including the hire of a channel manager.

Sasha Acosta, Zerto country manager in Canada

Sasha Acosta, who was appointed Zerto’s first country manager in Canada in January 2022, is the first country manager Zerto has named in Canada, so the appointment is a significant one.

“Prior to me coming on board, Zerto Canada was managed out of the U.S, although we had a couple of reps here,” Acosta said. “Matt Boris, our global VP of  Americas Sales, really  wanted to make a bigger investment in Canada. So now I work very closely with our global VP as the first Zerto country manager, to expand and grow and develop this market.”

The deepening of Zerto’s presence in Canada took place just after the close of the acquisition in which they were acquired by HPE, and while it is tempting to see the two things as related, it’s more of a coincidence.

“The deepening of our presence in Canada was more Zerto focused rather than HPE,” Acosta said. “This initiative came from Matt Boris wanting to expand and invest in Canada itself. This did run in parallel with the HPE acquisition, and what we can provide HPE here complements the overall picture. So it came together, but not by design.”

Before their acquisition by HPE, Zerto had a very defined reputation as a disaster recovery specialist, many of whose customers were in the high end of the market, and they had begun efforts to broaden that out when HPE bought them. They also provide backup and data mobility focus.

“We focus on our three use cases, although disaster recovery tends to be our biggest play,” Acosta said. “The challenge has been confusion in how we augment our disaster recovery experience. It’s not just big customers. It’s as small as 50 VMs. Every customer right now has some type of cloud initiative, and that resonates with all our customers.”

HPE now has a strategic focus on its GreenLake as-a-service business, and Zerto was quick in getting on board there. In June they announced that they had taken their technology and delivered it as a GreenLake service.

Building out a Canadian-based sales force is a key part of Acosta’s mandate.

Part of my mandate is to build a team,” he said. “We now have four reps covering Calgary, Atlantic Canada, Quebec and Ontario, and two sales engineers covering central Canada and western Canada. There is a lot of opportunity across Canada and we want to be able to capture that. Our broader coverage compared to many vendors gives us more chances to get to all our customers.”

Key strategic personnel have also been added.

“We also now have a field marketing manager and a channel manager, who is based in Ottawa,” Acosta stated. “Our channel will be a massive extension to our team, so the role of the channel manager will be critical.”

Acosta said that today Zerto has about 50 plus partners across Canada.

“They are broken into national and local ones,” he stated. “We have 14 MSPs across Canada and now doing quite a lot of work among hyperscalers and SIs.”

Zerto is also executing an aggressive reach-out strategy in Canada.

“Since February, we have done 30 events and have the next 25 planned out,” Acosta indicated. This includes VMUGs, tech talks, data connectors and partner road shows.”