Light Reading
Cisco-backed Embrane hires Burns, who oversaw years of growth for Spirent, but was sacked in 2013 when sales flagged.

Embrane Taps Ex-Spirent Boss Bill Burns as CEO

Mitch Wagner
4/1/2014
50%
50%

Cisco-backed virtual applications startup Embrane this week named as its new CEO Bill Burns, who previously experienced an unhappy ending to an otherwise successful stint heading up test and measurement systems vendor Spirent Comunications.

Burns replaces Embrane Inc. co-founder, Dante Malagrinò, who continues as chief product officer.

"Under Burns' leadership, Spirent grew revenue and profitability while establishing Spirent as a market share leader across each of its market segments," Embrane said in a statement.

That's true, but not the whole truth. Burns was named CEO of Spirent Communications plc (NYSE: SPM; London: SPT) in 2008. While sales grew during most of Burns's time there, revenues were flat in 2012 and down in the first half of last year. Spirent dumped Burns in September. (See Spirent Dumps Its CEO).

The transition seems to be a classic case of an entrepreneurial founder bringing in professional management to take the company to the next level. As a matter of fact, Embrane uses that exact phrase in its statement, attributed to Malagrinò. "With our customer traction, our new round of funding, and our string of industry partnerships, it's clear the time is now to take the company to the next level and Bill is the perfect candidate to carry our momentum forward. Blah blah excited blah blah challenges something about enterprises and service providers."

OK, so I may have made up the bit that starts with "blah blah," but the rest is verbatim.

And, as the statement verifies, Embrane has a new cash injection to help Burns reach that next level. The company recently announced a $14 million Series-C funding round led by Cisco Systems Inc. (Nasdaq: CSCO). Also chipping in are new Embrane investor Presideo Ventures, and previous investors Lightspeed Venture Partners, New Enterprise Associates (NEA), and North Bridge Venture Partners. (See Embrane Helps Cisco Build Its SDN Strategy.)

Embrane also announced partnerships to deliver its virtual lifecycle management solution for the Cisco Adaptive Security Virtual Appliance (ASAv) as well as virtual appliances from Cisco-owned Sourcefire. (See Cisco Banks on Sourcefire & Snort for Security.)

Embrane's pitch to customers is that it can offer an efficient way to introduce and manage essential applications, such as firewalls and load balancers, into a traditional or software-defined network through the use of its heleos software platform. Heleos provisions virtual servers, connecting them to the network, assigning rules and policies to applications, enables high availability, and automates licensing and usage monitoring for virtual appliances. The software is designed to eliminate the need to manage those functions manually.

While Embrane's software system and applications can be used in all kinds of network architectures, and is hardware-agnostic, its approach is tailor-made for SDN-enabled networks, which makes Cisco's support for Embrane intriguing, as SDN is both a threat and an opportunity for Cisco. On the one hand, SDN threatens Cisco's mainstay business -- selling proprietary hardware. On the other hand, software-defined networks will likely come in many different forms, including a Cisco flavor. The router giant sees a real opportunity in helping network operators (enterprise and telco) embrace SDN and NFV, supported by Cisco hardware, software and consulting services: Embrane provides some of the software smarts that are likely to attract the attention of network managers focused on flexibility in virtualized environments. (See Defining SDN & NFV.)

— Mitch Wagner, Circle me on Google+ Follow me on TwitterVisit my LinkedIn profileFollow me on Facebook, West Coast Bureau Chief, Light Reading. Got a tip about SDN or NFV? Send it to mwagner@lightreading.com.


Want to learn more about SDN? Check out the agenda for Light Reading's Big Telecom Event (BTE), which will take place on June 17 and 18 at the Sheraton Chicago Hotel and Towers. The event combines the educational power of interactive conference sessions devised and hosted by Heavy Reading's experienced industry analysts with multi-vendor interoperability and proof-of-concept networking and application showcases. For more on the event, the topics, and the stellar service provider speaker lineup, see Telecommunication Luminaries to Discuss the Hottest Industry Trends at Light Reading's Big Telecom Event in June.


(2)  | 
Comment  | 
Print  | 
Newest First  |  Oldest First  |  Threaded View
Mitch Wagner
100%
0%
Mitch Wagner,
User Rank: Lightning
4/7/2014 | 2:10:18 PM
Re: Startup or Turnaround Companies in T&M will always absorb proven Talent!
Vishnu - Indeed, if leaving a job under ill will disqualified a person from future equivalent positions, we'd all be dishwashers now. 
Vishnu Goel
50%
50%
Vishnu Goel,
User Rank: Light Beer
4/1/2014 | 1:24:26 PM
Startup or Turnaround Companies in T&M will always absorb proven Talent!
A very typical example of how on 'Filmsy" ground CEOs are eased out of the job,the Board Room upheavels happen, and they are not only rehabilitated,but welcomed with open arms to build another company Professionaly.Vishnu Goel T&M +919810101238
Flash Poll
LRTV Huawei Video Resource Center
Sales Director of INIT on Plug & Play Switch Devices

9|19|14   |   3:21   |   (0) comments


INIT Italy uses both the Huawei S5700 and S7700 series switches for the campus LAN environment. Sales Director Andrea Curti says their company chose these Huawei devices over others because of their performance, flexible scalability and plug-and-play features.
LRTV Huawei Video Resource Center
Saudi Arabia Upgrades Vocational Training System

9|19|14   |   3:31   |   (0) comments


The Technical and Vocational Training Corporation (TVTC) has 100,000 students, 150 government-owned institutions and oversees 1000 private institutes. The CIO of TVTC explains that Huawei devices have allowed them to manage multiple datacenters using just one software program, scientifically tracking the progress of students and teachers, saving them millions.
LRTV Huawei Video Resource Center
Huawei's Media Solutions Are Here to Stay

9|19|14   |   4:35   |   (0) comments


The current media revolution requires rapid upgrades in technology. New formats (HD, 3D, 4K etc.) and the subsequent explosion of file sizes demand sophisticated network and storage architecture. Social media and the multiple distribution channels require a robust asset management system. Gartner analyst Venecia Liu speaks about the current technological trends in ...
LRTV Huawei Video Resource Center
Microgenesis on Huawei's Switches

9|19|14   |   3:57   |   (0) comments


Microgenesis is a solutions and system integrator company in the Philippines whose areas of expertise include data centers, networking and security products. In this video, Executive Director Jeffrey Choa talks to us about his customers needs and they benefit from using Huawei switches.
LRTV Huawei Video Resource Center
Network Solutions Help the Philippines Jump Ahead

9|17|14   |   2:59   |   (0) comments


In the past, the Philippines has under-invested in technology. Now, the CEO of Softshell talks about how Huawei products help the Philippines jump ahead as the economy improves.
LRTV Huawei Video Resource Center
VCS Observation for Safer Cities in the Netherlands

9|17|14   |   5:20   |   (0) comments


Holland's VCS Observation has been operating for 22 years. Its main goal is to get cities safer. CEO Wim van Deijzen tells us some of the challenges his company faces and how Huawei is helping to overcome these challenges.
LRTV Huawei Video Resource Center
A Conversation With Serbia's Ministry of Interior

9|17|14   |   4:38   |   (0) comments


At HCC 2014, the Assistant Minister of the Ministry of Interior of the Republic of Serbia talks to us about his projects and corporation with Huawei. Solutions like Safe City and E-Government and services like cloud computing are just some of the areas his department is interested in.
LRTV Huawei Video Resource Center
IHS Analyst Discusses eLTE at CCW 2014

9|10|14   |   7:09   |   (0) comments


Thomas Lynch, associate director of critical communications at IHS Technology, talks about broadband in critical communications.
LRTV Huawei Video Resource Center
TCAA on Huawei eLTE: A Broadband Solution for Mission-Critical Communications

9|10|14   |   2:29   |   (0) comments


At CCW2014 in Singapore, the TCCA's Phil Kidner talks about the importance of broadband data for critical communications.
LRTV Custom TV
Spotlight on Cisco: SDN for Optical Networks

9|8|14   |   9:27   |   (0) comments


Cisco's Greg Nehib talks OpenFlow and more on the 'Software-Defined Networking for Optical Networks' panel at the Big Telecom Event in June 2014.
LRTV Custom TV
Cisco's Evolved Programmable Network (EPN)

9|8|14   |   4:05   |   (0) comments


A look at the various demos Cisco showed at Light Reading's Big Telecom Event highlighting Cisco's EPN innovation and how SDN and NFV technologies are enabling a variety of new services.
LRTV Huawei Video Resource Center
The Future of Ultra-Broadband, With Kevin Kelly (UBBF2014)

9|5|14   |   1:13   |   (1) comment


If you think the technological changes we've seen up to now are astounding, just wait until you see what the future has in store. Discuss upcoming breakthroughs with Kevin Kelly, Founding Executive Editor of Wired Magazine, at the Huawei Ultra-Broadband Forum on September 24.
Upcoming Live Events!!
September 23, 2014, Denver, CO
October 29, 2014, New York City
November 6, 2014, Santa Clara
November 11, 2014, Atlanta, GA
December 2, 2014, New York City
December 3, 2014, New York City
December 9-10, 2014, Reykjavik, Iceland
June 9-10, 2015, Chicago, IL
Infographics
A survey conducted by Vasona Networks suggests that 72% of mobile users expect good performance all the time, and they'll blame the network operator when it's not up to par.
Today's Cartoon
Vacation Special Caption Competition Click Here
Latest Comment
Hot Topics
AT&T: We'll Bundle Fixed Wireless & DirecTV
Mari Silbey, Independent Technology Editor, 9/15/2014
New NFV Forum Focused on Interoperability
Carol Wilson, Editor-at-large, 9/16/2014
NFV & The Data Center: Top 10 Takeaways
Sarah Reedy, Senior Editor, 9/18/2014
Connecticut Cities Crowdsource Gigabit Nets
Jason Meyers, Senior Editor, Utility Communications/IoT, 9/15/2014
Pics: LR's Women in Telecom Breakfast
Sarah Reedy, Senior Editor, 9/16/2014
Like Us on Facebook
Twitter Feed