Re-organizing for a period of rapid growth and industry consolidation, Metaswitch Networks today named Kevin Denuccio, a former executive at Cisco Inc. (CSCO) and Redback Networks, as its new CEO. John Lazar, who took over as CEO 10 months ago, moves up to become chairman, replacing founder Ian Ferguson, who will remain on the board of directors.
“For us, what we’re grappling with, is how to make sure we catapult ourselves into the next phase of growth,” said Lazar on a conference call with reporters and analysts. Metaswitch, which supplies softswitches and application software to carriers, managed to remain profitable and keep growing during last year’s economic crisis. “Now we’re looking ahead ambitiously to strong growth,” added Lazar, “and it felt like the right time to position ourselves as a management team.”
DeNuccio has experience guiding companies through times of sharp expansion. As senior vice president of Cisco’s service provider division, he guided that unit as revenues climbed to $4 billion from around half-a-billion in only four years. Taking over as CEO of Redback, a supplier of edge routers, he oversaw the company up to its acquisition by Ericsson (ERIC), for $2.1 billion, in 2006.
Metaswitch has “the opportunity to expand our product set as revenues grow,” said DeNuccio, who has served on the company’s board for the last two years. “We intend to expand globally, but we also have a large existing customer base and we want to continue to expand our product line to provide them with … next-generation, new kinds of products that we see needed in the network.”
Metaswitch has already talked publicly about expanding its product line around mobile applications and services.
Bringing more of Metaswitch’s top management to North America, which accounts for much of the company’s revenues, was also a motivating factor for the shift. Lazar is based in London, and DeNuccio will work out of the company’s Alameda, Calif. office.