Enterasys President and CEO Mike Fabiaschi passed away suddenly this week at his home in Rye, N.H. He was 53.
Enterasys Chairman Mark Stone has been named interim CEO.
Fabiaschi, a 25-year industry veteran, joined Enterasys in April 2006. He came to Enterasys from management software giant CA, where he was a senior vice president responsible for launching CA's efforts in the telecommunications vertical and for its fault and performance management software business.
Prior to CA, Fabiaschi was president and CEO of Aprisma, a fault and performance management company that was spun out from Enterasys in 2002 and bought by The Gores Group, which leads the private investor group that purchased Enterasys in March 2006.
"Mike led Enterasys and other technology companies with a passion for driving customer-centric changes and sales skill leadership," Stone said in a statement. "He put his heart and his mind into every effort in both his personal and professional life. Mike leaves a remarkable legacy that his business associates and friends will benefit from for years to come."
Fabiaschi had just helped swing a $550 million deal between Gores and Siemens for Gores to acquire Siemens' Enterprise Communications group and combine it with Enterasys and other Gores assets. The deal allowed Enterasys to obtain a significant, multibillion dollar presence in VoIP, security and wireless in order to better compete with Cisco in the Ethernet switching market.
Fabiaschi hinted at such ambitions months before the deal.
"Mike was an outstanding individual, a valued friend and he will be sorely missed by everyone," said Alec Gores, Founder, Chairman and CEO of The Gores Group, in a statement. "Our sympathies are with his wife and family during this difficult time."
Fabiaschi is survived by his wife and two daughters, one grandchild, four siblings, and his father.
Fabiaschi also served as chairman, president and CEO of LPA/XELUS, a service and supply chain management software company in the high-tech, transportation, aerospace and defense industries. He also served as president and CEO of Zamba/Racotek, a public wireless networking and CRM systems provider.
Prior to Zamba/Racotek, Fabiaschi held several senior sales positions at MAIBasic Four and Burroughs Corporation.
"The industry has lost a great leader," said Network World CEO John Gallant. "Mike was a champion of the view that customers are your best asset and he worked so hard to build and nurture strong customer relationships. He really focused on making the companies he worked with more responsive and open to customers and ensuring that their needs were met. IT executives have lost a good friend and the industry is diminished by his passing."