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Comings & Goings: Brocade Lures Another Important Engineer

By Paula Bernier November 06, 2014

Brocade continues to shake up the world of networking. 

The company is now ranked No. 2 in the enterprise network and communications space, according to Infonetics Research data released in July. And Brocade has been a leader – both in the enterprise and the service provider arenas – in the important new areas of network functions virtualization and software-defined networking.

In an effort to stay toward the head of the pack, Brocade continues to attract important talent from its rivals.

Just earlier today, Brocade revealed that Kevin Shatzkamer, a Cisco veteran, has come aboard as a distinguished engineer and CTO of mobile networking. Shatzkamer has more than 50 mobile networking patents granted or issued, co-convened the Open Web Alliance, and authored the books "IP Design for Mobile Networks" and "Building the Mobile Internet."

In a company statement announcing his move, Shatzkamer noted that Brocade is “aggressively seeking to disrupt the networking industry” and has done some important acquisitions and “assembled a high-caliber team to do just that."

Indeed.

“Cisco dominates the enterprise networking and communication market by a wide margin, due to offering the broadest solution portfolio, receiving positive feedback from enterprises, and capturing significant market share,” Matthias Machowinski, directing analyst for enterprise networks and video at Infonetics Research said earlier this year. “The battle for second place is raging between Brocade, HP, and Juniper, and each has unique strengths: Brocade has the strongest financials, HP is growing the fastest, and Juniper has experienced the highest improvement in enterprise feedback.”

Brocade’s other recent notable hires include Colin Dixon, Tom Nadeau, and Benson Schliesser.

In May, Dixon joined Brocade as principal engineer. A former employee at IBM Research’s Austin Lab, Intel Research, Microsoft Research, and the University of Washington, Dixon is best known for his work on scalable and distributed systems in the SDN realm. That included work on building network fabrics using commodity Ethernet hardware controlled by server software. Dixon also is an active contributor to the OpenDaylight Project, to which he and a colleague submitted the Dixon-Erickson OpenDaylight Merged Controller Proposal.

Now a Brocade distinguished engineer, Nadeau is a leader of the OpenDaylight Project and OpenStack initiatives, and an active member of the Internet Engineering Task Force. Nadeau previously served as a distinguished engineer at Juniper, at which he played a key role in the company's SDN and NFV efforts. He has held similar roles at CA Technologies, Cisco, and other firms. And he’s the co-inventor on many patents.

Schliesser, who is a veteran of both Cisco Systems and Juniper Networks, also serves as a Brocade distinguished engineer.

In September Brocade unveiled its OpenDaylight-based SDN controller, which is slated for general availability this month. Kelly Herrell, Brocade’s vice president and general manager of software networking, recently explained to SDN Zone that Brocade is to OpenDaylight as Red Hat is to Linux. Brocade, he noted, is commercializing the work of OpenDaylight with the Vyatta Controller.

Brocade bought Vyatta two years ago this month. And just two months ago it added to its arsenal with the acquisition of Vistapointe, which offers visibility and analytics solutions for mobile operators embracing NFV architectures.

In addition to its success on the enterprise front, Brocade has been working closely with some of the world’s leading service providers.

For example, Telefónica and Brocade this August announced a collaboration to create network functions virtualization deployment and performance benchmarks following the service provider’s tests of the vendor’s solutions.

“In less than two hours, we deployed the Brocade Vyatta 5600 vRouter from a memory stick and completed our performance tests in our NFV Reference Lab. These results are allowing us, as network operators, to aggressively change our perspective regarding what is possible with software-driven networking in order to accelerate the adoption and deployment of these revolutionary technologies,” Francisco-Javier Ramón, head of Telefónica NFV Reference Lab, explained earlier this year.




Edited by Maurice Nagle

Executive Editor, TMC

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