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Extreme Networks: We’re Growing and ‘Ready for a Fight’

Conflict Boxing Gloves

With its Zebra Technologies, Avaya and Brocade acquisitions behind it – and those integrations complete – Extreme Networks now is focused on driving growth through automation and transformation.

That’s according to Gordon Mackintosh, Extreme’s vice president of worldwide partner programs. Last October, the company unveiled a new unified partner program while executives asked partners to pursue more cross-sale and up-sale opportunities with the company and its expanded portfolio.

In April, Extreme rolled out a new in-house financing program for partners, customers and prospects that want to purchase the company’s offerings.

Extreme Networks' Gordon Mackintosh

Extreme Networks’ Gordon Mackintosh

Extreme Capital Solutions includes Brocade’s capital-solutions team, which Extreme gained in its $55 million acquisition of Brocade’s data-center networking business. The program includes subscription, capital leasing and usage business models that provide flexibility for partners and customers.

In a Q&A with Channel Partners, Mackintosh gives an update on partner momentum and the role partners are playing in the company’s overall growth.

Channel Partners: On Jan. 1, Extreme partners began a new journey as part of the company’s unified partner program. What’s the status of that journey?

Gordon Mackintosh: It’s been going great. The new partner program has been extremely well received by our partners. In fact, many of them have been really surprised that we were able to integrate three partner programs into one and unify it together. And I believe that success came from the fact that we actually worked with partners to build the program, so the program was in many ways built by partners for partners, and we really integrated all of the best ingredients of the different programs from the acquisitions to create an industry-leading unified partner program.

CP: Among Extreme’s goals for fiscal year 2018, which ended June 30, was reaching $1.1 billion in year-over-year revenue growth. Is the company on track to reach that goal?

GM: We’re in a closed period at the moment so I can’t comment, unfortunately, on revenue. What I will say is that our partners are playing an extremely important role in our growth. If I look at our deal-registration business … we’re seeing about a 60 percent increase in deal registration overall. And the other big thing is, at the partner conference last fall we asked partners to bring us new customers, and we’ve seen that literally double over the course of this fiscal year. So we’re going to close this fiscal year on $30 million in closed business from new customers brought to us by partners through our deal-registration program.

CP: What’s attracting all of these new customers?

GM: We have the portfolio expansion through the acquisitions, so there’s more for the partners to talk about. We’ve also spent a lot of money enabling our partners so that they’re capable of selling a broader solution. And then also with the Extreme Demand Center, we’ve supported them with leads, and building leads and [a] pipeline of opportunity, focused particularly on the new customer space.

We classify a new customer as a customer who hasn’t bought anything in the last three years. You put all of the data together from the acquisitions, all the dormant customers, and then you put together focus with …

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