October 06, 2011, 6:54 PM — How's this for a challenge? The CEO dies suddenly and you're tabbed to take his place -- on the heels of your network infrastructure company entering into a major new strategic partnership and in the midst of the worst economic downturn since the Great Depression. Oh, did I mention your competition includes some companies named Cisco Systems, Hewlett-Packard and Juniper Networks, among others? That's life for Chris Crowell, CEO of Enterasys Networks, who took over in 2009 shortly after predecessor Mike Fabiaschi's untimely death. Since then, Crowell has refreshed Enterasys' product line, pushed for the development of innovative new social media-based network management capabilities that promise to make life easier for network admins, and achieved record sales in the last financial quarter. In this latest installment of the IDG Enterprise CEO Interview Series, Crowell spoke with IDGE Chief Content Officer John Gallant about how Enterasys is competing against networking's big dogs, explored an upcoming fabric launch expected in October and talked about the company's partnership with Siemens Enterprise Communications. He also explained why "Isaac" is so important and where Enterasys plans to take the technology.
What is the unique selling proposition for Enterasys? How do you position the company to customers versus the companies that they hear about a lot more about, like the Ciscos, HPs and Junipers?