Our sister site Light Reading reports that F5 hired James Feger as its general manager of service providers. F5 told SDxCentral that he “will oversee service provider strategy worldwide and handle product development, product management and marketing.”
Feger is no stranger to service providers. He spent the previous 14 years at CenturyLink in a variety of positions. He briefly served as vice president of network strategy and development and later as interim chief technology officer. Most recently he led the company’s network virtualization unit.
He moves to F5 at a time when the company is planning to expand its portfolio. Two big categories are 5G and IoT.
“Whether rolling out 5G, connecting IoT, or delivering infrastructure services, F5’s solutions are uniquely suited to meet the requirements of today’s service providers,” Feger told Light Reading. “I joined F5 because I see a tremendous opportunity to further accelerate the service-provider business through even greater strategic clarity and focus, and I’m thrilled to be here.”
F5 announced earlier this year that it was launching new 5G, IoT and network function virtualization (NFV) offerings. Those came after an F5 study found that 55 percent service provider see IoT as the most important trend in the next five years.
“Service providers are increasingly disaggregating hardware and software in their networks and embracing virtualization and automation,” said Kara Sprague, who leads and manages F5’s application delivery controller business. “F5’s solutions are specifically designed with this future state in mind — consolidating and optimizing network functions, reducing total cost of ownership, and facilitating multi-layered end-to-end security that spans devices, networks, and applications.”
Light Reading’s Carol Wilson writes that Feger was instrumental in pushing network virtualization for CenturyLink, leading to the creation of its Programmable Services Backbone.
Anil Simlot, CenturyLink’s vice president of virtual services development and support, will replace Feger. He has been with the company since 1998 when it was Qwest Communications.
We’ve seen several departures from CenturyLink since its $34 billion acquisition of Level 3. Its partner side in particular has seen some turnover with channel manager Gregory Birch leaving for Intelisys and channel chief John DeLozier moving to 8×8.
F5 last week added new Sprint CEO Michel Combes to its board of directors.