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Former VCE CEO Talks 'Breaking Glass' As New Leader Of Viptela And Why The Partner Community Is Like Oxygen

Praveen Akkiraju, the new CEO of SD-WAN startup Viptela, tells CRN that now is the perfect time for partners to tap into a booming market segment in enterprise IT.

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Viptela's New CEO

Praveen Akkiraju says it's time for him to be "breaking glass" and "disrupting" the networking industry as the new CEO of software-defined WAN startup Viptela, after three years of growing VCE into a $2.1 billion business and nearly two decades at Cisco.

"2017 is the year of software-defined WAN," said Akkiraju in an interview with CRN. "This is a huge new opportunity for partners to jump on board to be able to tap into one of the fastest-growing market segments in enterprise IT."

Akkiraju talks to CRN about why he left VCE last year, the channel philosophy he learned at Cisco, as well as Viptela's cloud and channel strategy. "For us, the partner community is like oxygen. We need their guidance," he said.

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