Tech Industry

Penguin Computing hires Sun sales executive

Bill Cook leaves Sun Microsystems to take a new job as sales chief at the Linux system seller.

Bill Cook has left Sun Microsystems to take a new job as sales chief at Linux system seller Penguin Computing.

During his 19 years at Sun, Cook rose to the level of vice president in charge of U.S. sales. A recent restructuring at the company had moved Cook out of that position and also shuffled his former boss, Robert Youngjohns, into a new role. The restructuring put Rich Napolitano at the head of North American sales. Youngjohns now leads Callidus Software.

At Penguin Computing, Cook is now vice president of sales and service. "I decided it was a good time to re-examine what I was looking to do and what I had the most fun doing," he said. "I came across the opportunity at Penguin Computing, which is in some ways similar to what Sun was 19 years ago when I joined"--a start-up with fast growth and lots of potential.

Bill Cook
Bill Cook
Penguin got its start selling Linux computers, but in 2003 it acquired Scyld Computing, which makes software to link groups of Linux computers into a cluster used for high-performance computation jobs. The company has between 75 and 80 employees and is hiring.

San Francisco-based Penguin also has hired Frank Mattson as chief financial officer. Mattson previously was CFO and later president of Scientific Learning, when that company held its initial public offering.

Penguin Computing also hired Clark Roundy, formerly vice of international operations at rival Linux Networx, to become vice president of cluster products.

Cook said his top priority is improving Penguin's visibility. "The biggest challenge we face is awareness of our capability. We have the chance to be the standard cluster company for the Linux world and the enterprise if we do this right," Cook said.

In the future, Penguin's goal is to retool the Scyld software so it makes a flexible foundation for mainstream business software, not just for calculation tasks.