Taking Deal Making to the Extreme CEO Ed Meyercord and COO Norman Rice met in November 2013, this where the story begins.

Taking Deal Making to the Extreme (Wireless Networks )

Extreme Networks a 20year old networking company Founded in 1996, headquartered in San Jose, California, was a leader in its time but had become tired and hard-wired. Following a chance meeting at a yard sale Extreme now has a new start.


Andy Brockhurst met the main players recently and delved deeper to discover how the transformation came about

CEO Ed Meyercord and COO Norman Rice met in November 2013, this where the story begins.

Norman said “We met in a unique way I was in private equity and tried to acquire Enterasys and I was out bid by extreme, So I talked to the chairman of the board which was Ed about the deal and talked about what our plans were. We discussed what the right thing to do with the business was and we talked about the future to set out and transform the industry. We are transforming as the markets transforms.

He and I got together 6 to 9 months later and we agreed on most things and ultimately went down this path in setting out this Company. We believe we had a great starting core asset at that point we have a wireless switching port folio, a small wireless port folio and then the management software.

About five years ago we started a turn around, Ed was the chairman of the board he stepped in as CEO we believe that we are so disruptive we are a Disrupter.

Extreme consolidation

Back in 2013 an ineffective 20 year old network company made its first acquisition when it snapped up Enterasys Networks, it went on to a buying spree, mostly fire-sales bidding and buying different elements with WiFi business from Zebra, networking from Avaya and data centres from Brocade.

The most important element of these and other value acquisitions where the business being acquired had unique assets but had some kind of problem. Extreme or should I say Ed Meyecord the CEO and COO Norman Rice saw it could bring those groups into its fold and accelerate growth.

For example, Avaya had innovative network products but existed inside a unified communications company, so it never managed to shine. Extreme was able to exploit these assets and is probably industry’s largest network pure-play vendor


This year Aerohive was snapped up and brings great value plus innovative solutions

Aerohive fits the model well and will lead the company in the right direction, it has some innovative products but has struggled to maintain sales momentum. It was a pioneer in controllerless WiFi and has one of the best cloud management portals in the networking industry, because it balances ease of use with advanced capabilities. Most cloud management tools are feature-rich. Aerohive allows administrators to go deeper technically.

Unlike previous acquisitions Avaya, Zebra and Brocade were used to create scale, where Aerohive will enable Extreme to grow as it moves into new markets and brings a different revenue model to the company. The majority of Aerohive’s revenue is channel bases and recurring, which will change the direction of future growth.