Extreme Looks for Calm After Turbulent Times

With the new executive leadership in place, the work now turns to developing a strategic plan that will be released within the next 30 days.

Extreme CEO

Less than two weeks after announcing disappointing financial results, Extreme Networks President and CEO Chuck Berger resigned. He was replaced by board Chairman Ed Meyercord who has been a company board member for five years.

Meyercord made several changes to the company’s leadership team and expanded CTO Eric Broockman’s role to executive vice president of engineering.

Meyercord also named Bob Gault executive vice president of worldwide sales, channel and services. Eileen Brooker was named executive vice president of global alliances and strategic accounts, and Norman Rice was appointed to the role of executive vice president of global marketing and corporate development.

"They will be instrumental in driving a customer-focused culture at Extreme Networks and will bring a clear vision of how to align our product development investments with customer needs," Meyercord said in a statement.

Throughout the executive upheaval, Meyercord and other officials were quiet about what drove the need for the changes or about plans going forward. During a May 6 conference call with analysts and journalists about the company's quarterly earnings, the CEO said several times that the industry would know more when he and other executives release details of a strategic plan within the next 30 days.

"This team is working closely with the rest of our [executive] staff and a small group inside of Extreme to implement an aggressive strategic plan," Meyercord said, according to a transcript from Seeking Alpha. "It is our intention to quickly adopt a more focused product and go-to-market operating plan that builds on Extreme's strength and competitive position in growth segments of our industry. As part of this process, Extreme has to operate more efficiently with tighter execution."

Meyercord said the first three months "clearly … was not a good quarter for us." The company missed its projected financials, and saw weakness in its higher education and venue businesses in the United States. Overseas, the company was feeling the impact of a stronger dollar, as well as local competition, plus pricing pressures in Asia from the likes of Cisco System and Huawei Technologies. The company saw revenue fall 16 percent year-over-year, to $119.6 million, and lost $23.5 million.

Extreme is in a market that not only includes such competitors as Cisco, Hewlett-Packard, Juniper Networks, Brocade and Avaya, but also is in a state of transition as network virtualization makes inroads and such trends as data analytics, social software, IT mobility, the Internet of things and the cloud put more demands on networks for performance and capacity.