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Gotham Networks, MIA

Light Reading
News Analysis
Light Reading
6/28/2002
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Gotham Networks appears to be leaving the networking scene much as it entered it -- stealthily, revealing as little as possible.

Repeated calls to Gotham's cofounders, CEO Lou Piazza and CTO Vijay Aggarwal, as well as to other investors and the company's board, went unanswered today. But several industry sources, including one of the company's VCs, say Gotham's closed its doors.

"Yes the company shut down this week," confirmed Bruce Sachs, partner at Charles River Ventures, which helped fund Gotham, in an email late today. "Great team, terrific effort, outstanding product, super value proposition, but faltering customers that just delayed buying decisions forever. This is a terrible casualty of the current environment. The employees and management did everything they should and could have done."

So far, the management and other investors aren't willing to talk. "Someone told you we're out of business? What a riot," said Piazza's assistant. "They're all at lunch." And: "You have to talk to the company. Goodbye," said board member Michael Champa, CEO of Winphoria Networks.

Gotham was launched in 1999 but surfaced only late in 2000 with talk of making an edge switch/router (see Gotham Networks ). Over time, the vendor appeared to be evolving in competition with the likes of WaveSmith Networks Inc., which is making a multiservice edge switch geared to help RBOCs and IXCs migrate legacy circuits to packet-switched IP networks (see A New Optical Taxonomy, page 9, and The Great ATM Switch Blitz).

The quondam competition isn't mourning the apparent loss, but Chad Dunn, director of product marketing at WaveSmith, insists the market for multiservice edge switches is still strong. "Carriers are certainly still interested in aggregating edge traffic," he says. WaveSmith's working in six live networks, he claims, streamlining traffic flows.

But WaveSmith has acknowledged that carriers, while interested in saving router ports, aren't ready to migrate their circuit-switched nets entirely to Internet Protocol (IP) via Multiprotocol Label Switching (MPLS) (see WaveSmith's Multiservice Surprise). Unfortunately, that seems to have been Gotham's modus operandi. Sources say it's one that carriers aren't buying at the moment.

"Everything's reactive, not proactive, this year," says Sam Greenholtz, senior analyst with Communications Industry Researchers Inc. He says that even RFPs for Asynchronous Transfer Mode (ATM) multiservice core and edge switching gear aimed at helping carriers make the circuit-to-packet conversion are more or less fishing expeditions that probably won't go anywhere until 2003, even if vendors are chosen.



Interestingly, one of these RFPs, a call by Verizon Communications Inc. (NYSE: VZ) for "Fast Packet/Converged Access Services," which WaveSmith, Lucent Technologies Inc. (NYSE: LU), and Marconi PLC (Nasdaq/London: MONI) are said to be vying for, is set to be decided in July -- even if no implementation is done immediately.

— Mary Jander, Senior Editor, Light Reading
http://www.lightreading.com

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GreatFallsNetworks
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GreatFallsNetworks,
User Rank: Light Beer
12/4/2012 | 10:11:25 PM
re: Gotham Networks, MIA
Telecom field is dying.
QUIT and get a life outside.
wayland_smithy
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wayland_smithy,
User Rank: Light Beer
12/4/2012 | 10:11:23 PM
re: Gotham Networks, MIA
Heard the CEO of Native has also left (Steve Harbour) - anyone know where to ?
rbkoontz
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rbkoontz,
User Rank: Light Beer
12/4/2012 | 10:11:19 PM
re: Gotham Networks, MIA
How can Gotham be considered "missing" in action if they have never been "in action"? No customers usually translates to another dead start-up. Things that seemed a good idea in 1999 are not typically going to make it in the (real) world.

Some new products will have to succeed in this space some day. The CBX500 and 36170 cannot live forever...
yomama
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yomama,
User Rank: Light Beer
12/4/2012 | 10:11:18 PM
re: Gotham Networks, MIA
Totally agree - don't forget the B-STDX 9000 more widely deployed than the CBX 500, especially overseas.
Route495
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Route495,
User Rank: Light Beer
12/4/2012 | 10:11:18 PM
re: Gotham Networks, MIA
Some new products will have to succeed in this space some day. The CBX500 and 36170 cannot live forever...

--

True, but most startups will die before that day
comes. Also Ciena cant finance every promising
startup out there.


Litewave
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Litewave,
User Rank: Light Beer
12/4/2012 | 10:11:16 PM
re: Gotham Networks, MIA
"Great team, terrific effort, outstanding product, super value proposition, but faltering customers that just delayed buying decisions forever. This is a terrible casualty of the current environment.

Bullocks!

Had the market no taken a nosedive, Gotham would still have had its margins erode very rapidly because of the cost of the system (not price, but cost).

Nobody needs a super-duper everything, just a good-enough something.
SonOfSmasher
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SonOfSmasher,
User Rank: Light Beer
12/4/2012 | 10:11:13 PM
re: Gotham Networks, MIA
(Why does that name sound so familiar?)

"Had the market no taken a nosedive, Gotham would still have had its margins erode very rapidly because of the cost of the system (not price, but cost)."

The company is gone, you can all quit with the FUD already.

"Nobody needs a super-duper everything, just a good-enough something."

Is that what you tell yourself so you can sleep at night?

I've heard the REAL score...

SOS
tjs
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tjs,
User Rank: Light Beer
12/4/2012 | 10:11:13 PM
re: Gotham Networks, MIA
Ouch !!!!

Forget the team members, Management doomed them, set a record for incomptence, a joke set of leaders. Very low value add..... won't float, lou's data and now gotham,,, yikes.

The engineers were mostly working hard, would have been OK in the bubble days. The prime issue was performance of the management team.

You could almost smell the doom, even a year ago.


Best of luck ex-gotham-team.


Tom
greybeard
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greybeard,
User Rank: Light Beer
12/4/2012 | 10:11:13 PM
re: Gotham Networks, MIA
> "Great team, terrific effort, outstanding
> product, super value proposition, but faltering
> customers that just delayed buying decisions
> forever. This is a terrible casualty of the
> current environment.

If this was completely true, then they would have found a way to keep it going (IMHO). I think that litewave is right when he says "Bullocks". I suppose that you can't blame a person for praising the deceased.
_________
50%
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_________,
User Rank: Light Beer
12/4/2012 | 10:11:11 PM
re: Gotham Networks, MIA
FWIW, I heard the BSTDX line was being terminated at the end of next month.
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