Pan partly fills the brain-trust void created earlier this year after chief architect Jan Medved left. The company still hasn't replaced John Yu, former chief technology officer and a company founder, who stepped down from day-to-day duties late last spring (see Hammerhead Founder Steps Aside).
Pan "fills a key architectural role for us, especially as we move into the services area," says Joe Sigrist, Hammerhead's CEO. Yu's spot might remain vacant a while longer, however: "We are not necessarily searching for a new CTO," Sigrest says.
Pan has been at Hammerhead for a couple of months; his arrival comes to light as Hammerhead prepares to announce its new global VP of sales, Jack Reeves, who started last week. Reeves, a veteran of Alcatel SA (NYSE: ALA; Paris: CGEP:PA) and Ericsson AB (Nasdaq: ERICY), hails from Ciena Corp. (Nasdaq: CIEN), having arrived there in the 2003 acquisition of Akara. His responsibilities will include managing Hammerhead's reseller agreement with Fujitsu Network Communications Inc. (FNC) (see Hammerhead & Fujitsu Team up and Ciena Plunks Down $45M for Akara).
Pan's resume includes a stint with Juniper Networks Inc. (Nasdaq: JNPR), but like Reeves, he most recently worked at Ciena. Hammerhead insists the hirings are unrelated, but could they indicate some kind of exodus? Well... yeah (see Ciena Cuts 1/4 of Staff).
Hammerhead is among the companies producing a multiservice edge router to move access traffic onto a core running Internet Protocol (IP) and Multiprotocol Label Switching (MPLS). Competitors including Juniper and Nortel attack this question from an IP point of view, but Hammerhead focuses instead on older Layer 2 traffic types such as Frame Relay, aiming to connect legacy networks to a newfangled converged core (see Hammerhead Heads for the Edge and Hammerhead Strikes at the Edge).
The addition of Pan could presage an added Sonet focus for Hammerhead, because the Dry Martini specificiation -- described by Heavy Reading analyst Scott Clavenna as the "next gen of next-gen Sonet" -- brings the idea of pseudowires to the Sonet world (see How About a Dry Martini?).
Pseudowires were defined in the IETF "Draft Martini" spec as a means to emulate Layer 2 connections across an IP/MPLS network. Virtual private networks (VPNs) based on Martini -- named for one of the spec's authors, Luca Martini -- help move disparate traffic types onto an MPLS-based core. Carriers seem keen on that kind of convergence, and every incumbent equipment vendor has tilted its product slate accordingly (see Incumbents Converge on Convergence).
Hammerhead's competitors in the multiservice edge market include Alcatel SA (NYSE: ALA; Paris: CGEP:PA), Ciena Corp. (Nasdaq: CIEN), Cisco Systems Inc. (Nasdaq: CSCO), Juniper Networks Inc. (Nasdaq: JNPR), Laurel Networks Inc., Lucent Technologies Inc. (NYSE: LU), Network Equipment Technologies Inc. (net.com) (NYSE: NWK), Nortel Networks Ltd. (NYSE/Toronto: NT), Riverstone Networks Inc. (OTC: RSTN.PK), and Tellabs Inc. (Nasdaq: TLAB; Frankfurt: BTLA).
— Craig Matsumoto, Senior Editor, Light Reading
For more on this topic, check out:
- The Heavy Reading reports:
— The Future of Sonet/SDH
— Multiservice Provisioning Platforms: Empowering the Metro Edge
— Setting a Course to Convergence: The Incumbents' Wireline Strategies
For further education, visit the archives of related Light Reading Webinars: