Posted: October 03, 2013

GenXYZ Top Five: Kishen Mangat, 39

Director of product management, Cisco Systems Inc.

Maria Martin

When a giant came knocking, BroadHop happily opened the door.

In January, Cisco Systems Inc. acquired the company, a provider of next-generation policy control and service management for carrier networks.

Kishen Mangat, who co-founded BroadHop in 2003, says the time was right to make the move.

“The market began to consolidate and policy server products were being packaged with adjacent network equipment offerings,” he said. “Cisco was looking for the best technology and a world-class team. BroadHop’s shareholders were looking to solidify our market position. We saw Cisco as the right partner.”

Cisco has helped accelerate the business, according to Mangat, one of BroadHop’s three founders. The policy server business has seen substantial revenue growth since the acquisition.

“Having a broader portfolio and a global sales force provides a significant go-to-market advantage,” Mangat says. “Becoming a part of Cisco has been positive for our employees, shareholders and customers.”

“Positive” is a word that Mangat uses a lot when he discusses his experience as
an entrepreneur.

At Colorado College, he studied business and economics, and decided he wanted to work for himself. The high-tech industry was growing, so it seemed a natural fit.

“If you have a computer science background, it helps, but if you have an enjoyment of technology and a determination to follow a path, you can get traction,” he says. “There’s something to be said for creating a narrative and following a path. I’ve seen capable people who didn’t have the measure of success they could have achieved because they’ve made too many shifts and changes.”

His “cup half-full” attitude helps, and it’s precisely what he looks for in new hires, Mangat says.

“You make sure they have the right skills and experience, then it’s all about desire, passion and willingness to roll up those sleeves,” he says. “If I detect that a person has fears or doubts, I don’t see them as a good fit. This business moves very fast, so you have to have people who can keep up, and believe they can change the world in some way.”

His own entrepreneurial spirit was fueled by his parents, both of whom, he says, were very successful in their lines of work – his mother an artist, his father, a plastic surgeon.

“I’m incredibly thankful for the opportunities I’ve had,” he says. “I was lucky enough to go to a great liberal arts school.”

He gives back to the educational community with his involvement in two scholarship funds: The Sean Lough Foundation – which honors one of Mangat’s friends who died after a mountain biking accident – offers scholarships to CSU. The Ritt Kellogg Memorial Fund helps Colorado College students who are interested in wilderness exploration and education.

“I’m an avid rock climber and mountaineer,” says Mangat, adding that his two young sons show interest in skiing and climbing.

“We do some of that as a family,” he says. “My wife and sons are the big priority for me.”

His busy travel schedule means he’s away from Denver for about one week out of every five, often overseas.

“My wife has been all in on this career adventure,” he says. “I’m very lucky. To do this all, I had to have a great partner.”

Maria Martin is a freelance writer.

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