SDN architectures

Cisco SDN Exec Joins Arista

Switch vendor Arista Networks Inc. has hired a new vice president from Cisco Systems Inc. (Nasdaq: CSCO) to run software-defined networking (SDN) engineering.

Tom Black was most recently the vice president running Cisco's own SDN effort, the Open Network Environment (ONE).

Black's job change was reported on the SDN Central blog Sunday, and Arista confirmed it in emails sent to the press Monday.

Blogger Matthew Palmer -- who, by day, is a partner in consultancy Wiretap Ventures -- thinks this could be a six- to 12-month setback for onePK, the facet of ONE that centered on providing application programing interfaces (APIs) to tap network state information.

Why this matters
Along with Kireeti Kompella leaving Juniper Networks Inc. (NYSE: JNPR), Black's move shows how SDN is opening up opportunities outside the big incumbent vendors.

Kompella left for an untested startup, while Black is joining a high-profile company that's expected to go public someday -- so there's a difference. Even so, the trend seems to be that some long-time networking executives want to work on SDN, and want to do so outside the confines of a big company.

For more

— Craig Matsumoto, Managing Editor, Light Reading

Pete Baldwin 12/5/2012 | 5:20:01 PM
re: Cisco SDN Exec Joins Arista

"Am I the only one to notice that Palo Alto Networks hired the Arista CFO and Arista hired the Palo Alto Networks CFO? Was it a planned swap?"

-- William Koss, ex of Ciena, now of Plexxi, on Twitter yesterday

I'm waiting for them to announce that the deal includes a player to be named later and cash considerations.

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