Extreme Networks Sharpens Its Focus on Solutions, Partners, Midmarket
When Ed Meyercord took over as president and CEO of Extreme Networks last year, he inherited a company with its share of challenges.
The networking vendor two weeks earlier had once again missed its projected quarterly financial numbers; revenue had declined 16 percent year over year; Extreme lost $23.5 million; and it was seeing weakness in key markets such as higher education and venues. It also was feeling pressure from rivals Cisco Systems and Juniper Networks, and was struggling to complete the integration of Enterasys Networks, a wired and wireless networking company Extreme acquired the year before for $180 million.
However, the underpinnings of the company were solid, Meyercord (left in photo) said in a recent interview with eWEEK. Extreme had solid technology products, talented engineers, a good customer base in a midmarket and campus networking space that was being underserved by larger competitors, and—with the acquisition of Enterasys—a head start on most other vendors in the convergence of wired and wireless networks.
More than anything, what the company needed to do was improve its focus, a word that Meyercord and Norman Rice, (right in photo) executive vice president of Marketing and Corporate Development, kept coming back to during a recent interview outside of Boston. And focus was a foundation of the corporate strategy Meyercord put in place weeks after taking over the top position after coming over from Extreme's board of directors, where he spent several years.
Key to the strategic plan new CEO Ed Meyercord put in place a year ago has been to offer solutions to a defined market with the help of the channel.
Under his direction, Extreme Networks changed its focus to selling solutions rather than point products. The company focused on selling its wireless capabilities as well as its wired expertise, on the midmarket and campus networking spaces, on five key verticals and one bolstering and expanding its channel partners. The company focused on building a solid brand, developing an effective go-to-market strategy and better defining itself for its employees, partners and customers.