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Matisse Aims to Make Impression

Stealth mode startup Matisse Networks is filling out its management team as it prepares to launch its first switch product later this year (see Matisse Discloses Mgt. Team).

Former Amber Networks CEO Sam Mathan is the man charged with bringing Matisse out of the shadows. The Hyderabad, India-born exec has a strong track record building switch vendors. Amber Networks was sold to Nokia Corp. (NYSE: NOK) for $421 million in July 2001. Prior to that, Mathan worked for Ascend Communications., which was snapped up by Lucent Technologies Inc. (NYSE: LU) for a cool $24 billion in 1999.

So, what does Matisse actually do? The Mountain-View, Calif.-based vendor is still keeping its flagship technology under wraps, although execs tell NDCF that it's working on a multiprotocol, distributed Layer 3 switch. The technology has been in alpha test in customer environments for the last nine months, and Mathan confirms that it will be generally available in the second half of this year.

My role is to lead the company to a successful product launch and filling out [Matisse] for growth,” he says.

Matisse is targeting its switch at “any of the sectors that require high-performance switching for distributed computing”, according to Mathan. This includes large enterprises, the Federal Government, and portal providers such as Google Inc. (Nasdaq:GOOG) and Yahoo Inc. (Nasdaq: YHOO), he adds.

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