SDN is taking a toll on Brocade.

The data centre networking company last week laid off 300 employees, or about 6.7% of its global workforce. Headcount is now 4,180.

The workforce reduction is due to a realignment of resources to pursue "previously announced data centre and software-defined networking strategies and cost reduction initiatives," according to an 8-K document filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission on Sept. 10.

Brocade aired its software-defined networking strategy in May, 2012. It includes implementing OpenFlow in "hybrid mode" -- OpenFlow controllers interacting with the control plane of Brocade routers to enable customers to simultaneously deploy traditional Layer 2/3 forwarding with OpenFlow -- support for overlay network virtualisation technologies such as NVGRE and VXLAN, and a partnership with NEC.

A partnership between Brocade and OpenFlow controller and switch start-up Big Switch Networks has ended. Meanwhile, Brocade is involved in the OpenDaylight open source SDN consortium work.

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