Big Switch Announces Executive Appointments to Drive Continued Product Innovation, Sales Execution Strategy and Global Growth

Alan Hase, Brant Kennedy and Dana Aiken Join Leadership Team; Derek Donahue to Lead Americas Sales Organization

SANTA CLARA, Calif., June 01, 2018 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Big Switch Networks, The Next-Generation Data Center Networking Company, today announced appointments to its executive leadership team to drive continued product innovation, global sales strategy and execution. The company has named Alan Hase to the role Chief Development Officer and VP of Engineering; Brant Kennedy to the role VP of Worldwide Sales; Derek Donahue to the role VP of Sales, Americas; in addition, Dana Aiken has been promoted to the role VP of Sales Strategy Enablement & Operations. All appointments are effective immediately.

Networking industry veteran Hase has been tapped by the company to lead and scale its product development organization to continue delivering category-creating and disruptive products to the global market. Kennedy will take helm of the fast-growing global sales organization, which has dedicated presence in more than 25 countries across North America, APAC and EMEA. Aiken will develop and drive sales operations and enablement strategy, as the global sales team expands at an accelerated pace. Hase, Kennedy and Aiken will report to Douglas Murray, Chief Executive Officer, and Donahue will report to Kennedy, running the Americas sales organization.

“I am pleased to welcome Alan, Brant and Derek to the Big Switch family, and commend Dana for her contributions to Big Switch.” said Douglas Murray, CEO, Big Switch Networks. “As Big Switch continues to introduce innovation via a highly differentiated product portfolio, I am confident in the collective abilities of this group to help execute on the company’s long-term vision, and guide its next phase of growth.”

Hase comes to Big Switch with a 30 year track record of engineering excellence and extensive experience driving innovation while leading and scaling global engineering teams. Most recently, Hase was at Extreme Networks, where he led its Campus Switching, Wireless and Orchestration business. Prior to Extreme Networks, he led Avaya’s Intelligent Networking Edge engineering and product management teams. Hase also spent 15 years at Cisco in various leadership roles in the areas of high end routing, security and wireless.  As Director of Engineering for Cisco’s Security Technology group, Hase led development and strategy for its IPSEC VPN and Intrusion Prevention products, helping Cisco’s security business scale to $1 Billion. Hase then became VP of Engineering for Cisco’s Wireless Networking group, where he led a global engineering team of more than 400 software, hardware and test engineers. In this role he drove the engineering organization to focus on innovation, execution and significant growth opportunities, enabling the business to grow revenues from $650 Million to over $1 Billion.

Kennedy brings to Big Switch nearly 30 years of sales and sales leadership experience, driving growth and capturing market share with disruptive technologies at established companies and hyper-growth technology startups, including Forescout, where he grew its sales organization from 15 to 200 members. Kennedy led the company through its largest period of customer acquisition, during the lead up to its IPO. Under Kennedy’s leadership, the sales organization delivered consistent YoY growth of more than 50%, which enabled the company to be self-sustaining during that period. Kennedy comes to Big Switch from Avanan, a leader in cloud applications security, where he was EVP of its global sales organization and was responsible for building an enterprise sales organization driving triple digit growth in revenues and customers. Prior to Avanan, Kennedy was Chief Revenue Officer at ScienceLogic where we was responsible for all revenue generating activities. Additionally, Kennedy has held sales management roles at Sybase, Orchestria, Nokia and Cabletron. Kennedy brings to Big Switch extensive experience selling to and leading teams across enterprise, government and service provider verticals. Kennedy is well-versed in scaling global sales and sales engineering teams, with an astute sense for geographic expansion strategy as well as channel program development.

Aiken has been at Big Switch for one year, responsible for building the company’s global sales enablement strategy and operations. Aiken brings to Big Switch more than 20 years of hyper-focused experience developing and growing sales and operations for start-up’s, including ForgeRock, Gigamon, Blackboard, and Connect-Ed (acquired by Blackboard) introducing innovative technologies into the market, resulting in IPO or M&A activity. At ForgeRock, Aiken was VP of Global Sales Operations and played an integral role in the company’s global growth, driving strategy to support and enable. At Gigamon, Aiken was VP of WW Sales Operations, responsible for creating and implementing overall sales operations and enablement strategies to support more than 200 sales representatives. During her time at Gigamon the company grew from $50MM (pre-IPO) to more than $175MM (post-IPO) in less than four years. At Blackboard, Aiken was VP of Sales Operations, where she implemented and oversaw all back-end sales operations for one of its largest business units.

Donahue brings to Big Switch more than 20 years of direct and channel sales experience focused on identification of new customers and opportunities, analyzing customer needs, negotiating and overseeing the placement of new products and delivery of services. Prior to Big Switch, Donahue was VP of Sales, Enterprise, at Ixia where he led its high performing enterprise, federal and channel sales teams, guiding the collective division through Keysight’s acquisition of Ixia. At Gigamon, Donahue was Sr. Director, Northeast, Central and Canada regions, where he scaled the organization across this region and lead nearly five years of QoQ and YoY growth. Donahue is a proponent of a channel-only sales model and is highly competent in creating and growing effective channel programs. At both Ixia and Gigamon, Donahue enabled his teams to strategically leverage tool vendors and channel partners, which resulted in increased productivity and contributed to overall record growth at both companies. Donahue has previously held management roles at Netscape, Exodus Communications, LightCyber, and more.

Big Switch continues to experience meaningful traction, with trailing 12-month annualized growth of more than 80%, with focus on the Global 2000. The company has surpassed global headcount of 200 employees, with dedicated presence in 25 countries, across North America, APAC and EMEA regions. Big Switch was named a Glassdoor Best Place to Work (2018), positioned at number 13, was named to the Technology Fast 500 by Deloitte (2017), positioned at number 247. Big Switch was named an IDC Innovator: Datacenter Software Defined Networking (2018) and is positioned as a Visionary in the Gartner Magic Quadrant for Data Center Networking (2017).  

About Big Switch Networks
Big Switch Networks is the Next-Generation Data Center Networking Company. We disrupt the status quo of networking by designing intelligent, automated, and flexible networks for our customers around the world. We do so by leveraging the principles of software-defined networking (SDN), coupled with a choice of industry-standard hardware. Big Switch Networks has two solutions: Big Monitoring Fabric, a next-generation network packet broker, which enables pervasive security and monitoring of data center and cloud traffic for inline or out-of-band deployments and Big Cloud Fabric, the industry's first next-generation switching fabric that allows for choice of switching hardware for OpenStack, VMware, Container, and Big Data use cases. Big Switch Networks is headquartered in Santa Clara, CA. For additional information, email, visit or follow us on Twitter @bigswitch, LinkedIn and YouTube.

Copyright 2018 Big Switch Networks, Inc. All rights reserved. Big Switch Networks, the Big Switch logo, Big Cloud Fabric, Big Mon, Big Monitoring Fabric, BMF, BigSecure, Big Switch Labs, Big Tap, BSN, Switch Light, ONL Certified, and ONL Certified Gold, ONLX are trademarks or registered trademarks of Big Switch Networks, Inc. in the U.S. and other countries. All other trademarks, service marks, registered marks or registered service marks are the property of their respective owners. Big Switch Networks assumes no responsibility for any inaccuracies in this document. Big Switch Networks reserves the right to change, modify, transfer or otherwise revise this publication without notice.