Stuart Barnes, Chairman and Chief Strategy Officer
After graduating from Queen Mary College, London University with BSc (Hons) and PhD in Engineering Stuart Barnes joined Standard Telecommunications Ltd, the Research Subsidiary of STC (a Division of ITT and subsequently Nortel). After 7 years in Research, including 3 years supporting development of STC Submarine Systems first Optical Repeater, he then was involved in turnaround activities in the Terrestrial Fibre and Cable divisions (Market Share increased from 5% to 50%). Then in STC Submarine Systems, he went on to become Deputy Technical Director and subsequently Technical Director in 1995, where he was responsible for the development of STC’s second optical repeater. This repeater is still in production today.
After the acquisition of the Submarine Group by Alcatel he moved to Paris to head up Alcatel’s Optical Recherche Group. In 1999 he Founded ilotron (UK), after a short period with Atlas Venture as an ER he co-founded Azea Networks in 2001, who merged with Xtera Communications Inc. in 2007. He is Visiting Professor at Southampton University and an Advisor to The School of Photonics, Aston University.
Jayesh Pankhania, Chief Financial Officer
Jayesh joined Xtera in February 2017 with over 25 years’ senior finance experience having started his career with PwC. He has since held senior roles in public quoted and privately owned companies, rising rapidly to the CFO role in his latest two positions, most recently with the HOC Group, a $150M privately owned construction group. Prior to that he was with Asia Resource Minerals PLC (Group Turnover >$1B) as Deputy CFO. Jayesh was responsible for improving corporate governance and financial controls in both cases.
Jayesh attended the University of East Anglia studying Accountancy, holds an MBA from the London Business School and is a Fellow of the Institute of Chartered Accountants in England and Wales.
Robert J Richardson, Founder and Chief Sales Officer
Robert joined Xtera in 2008 and serves as its Chief Sales Officer. Previously, he was the company’s Vice President of Global Submarine Solutions Sales, a role that he occupied for nine years. Robert has held a number of senior executive positions in his more than three decades of experience, including Director of Sales, Americas Region at Azea Networks, and Managing Director and President, North America, at 3D Networks. Previously, at Nortel Networks, he held various executive and leadership positions in sales, marketing and product management during his 21-year tenure, culminating in his appointment to Vice President. Prior to Nortel, he was a member of the technical staff at Telcordia (formerly, Bellcore), and held various engineering, operations and management positions at AT&T.
Robert attended the United States Naval Academy and the Illinois Institute of Technology, where he majored in engineering. He has completed executive education programs in marketing leadership at the London Business School and the Fuqua School of Business at Duke University, and strategic market management at Harvard Business School.
Keith Henderson, Founder and Chief Operating Officer
Keith joined Xtera in 2004 and serves as the COO. Keith is a Chartered Engineer and has over 20 years of experience in Operations management and has encompassed a wide range of responsibilities with companies ranging from venture funded start-up companies to multi-national organizations.
Prior to Xtera, Keith held the position of Operations Director in BAe Systems (Scotland) with responsibility for Electro Optical Systems and Sensors for Avionic applications. Keith also had a career in STC and Alcatel specializing in the design and development of submarine fiber optic cables.
Joerg Schwartz, SVP Turnkey Systems
Joerg is responsible for Xtera’s turnkey business activities which is delivering end-to-end subsea solutions by combining the company’s innovative equipment portfolio with extensive submarine systems engineering and project execution expertise. As part of his role he has involved the successful delivery of various submarine systems by Xtera over the last few years. Prior to that he established and managed the company’s Systems Engineering group. Other previous experience includes Management, Strategy, and Engineering roles at Ericsson and Alcatel. He also founded a technology company and served as an editor for technical publications.
Lynsey Thomas, VP Sales Global Region
Lynsey joined Xtera in 2016 as the VP Sales Global Region and enjoys an active role in the companies PR and Marketing activities. Having been involved with the subsea telecommunications industry since 1995 Lynsey’s previous roles included the Director of Operations of Apollo SCS Ltd and Department Head of the Cable & Wireless Submarine Systems Engineering team. During her time at C&W Lynsey worked on the Europe India Gateway, from conception to contract, but maintains her happiest days were at sea during the installation of Southern Cross. Having worked worldwide as a Supplier, Customer, Operator and Consultant she has an extensive knowledge of the telecoms market. Lynsey has also served as a Trustee in the Renewables Sector (on-shore wind and solar) and is a freelance writer and previous columnist for The Guardian.
Lynsey holds a Master’s Degree in Engineering Science from Oxford University.
Vijay Rudravajjala, VP Engineering
Vijay has over 25 years of experience in design and development of SDH and DWDM systems. Vijay joined Xtera in 2000 and was responsible for development of software for the Nu-Wave DWDM product. He and his team developed the software for the first 100nm Raman Amplifier line system introduced by Xtera in 2002. This system has been deployed and is operational with Reliance and Vodafone for over 13 years. He was responsible for developing software for the Unrepeatered submarine DWDM system introduced by Xtera in 2005. In 2009 he and his team developed Nu-Wave Optima ROADM product. He was responsible for the development of the first 100Gb/s coherent transponder introduced by Xtera in 2011 and is operational in several networks. He has also been responsible for the design of the Flexrate coherent 400Gb/s transponder introduced in 2016. Vijay has been serving in the position of Vice President Engineering since 2012.
Prior to Xtera Vijay was a member of technical staff at Alcatel for over 10 years working in Europe and the United States where he was responsible for developing software for SDH and DWDM products. Vijay has a Bachelor of Technology degree in Computer Science and Engineering from the National Institute of Technology India.
Paul Farrugia, VP Engineering for Submerged Equipment
Paul joined Xtera in 2008 and is now the VP Engineering for submerged equipment having previously been responsible for hardware development of SLTE at Azea. Prior to joining Azea in 2002 he was Director of Electro-Optics Development at Nortel’s Qtera Division where he was initially responsible for the high speed design of the LH4000 transponder circuit packs and subsequently became the Director of Transponder Development. Paul joined Alcatel (formally STC and Northern Telecom) as a graduate engineer in 1988 and was given responsibility for the tributary units of the SLTE first used in the TAT-9 system. He later became group leader for the high speed transmission units used in Alcatel’s first WDM SLTE. Paul then joined Corning Communications (formally BICC) where he worked on research activities involving radio of fibre transmission, data transmission over power lines, Ethernet data communications and WDM transmission techniques before leaving to join Qtera in 1999. Paul holds an Honours Degree in Electronic Engineering from the University of Liverpool.
Bill McCutcheon, VP Customer Service
Bill Joined Xtera in 2004 as Vice President of Operations and served in this capacity through transferring manufacturing to a top tier contract manufacturer. Then transitioned to Vice President of Global Support in 2006 as Xtera’s customer base growth dictated the required focus. Bill was Vice President of Operations for Intelligent Reasoning Systems, and was Vice President of the Customer Support organizations for Electro Scientific Industries and Photon Dynamics prior to joining Xtera. Bill started his career as in Process Engineer for both IBM and Hewlett Packard. Bill has travelled the world extensively and has lived in both Taiwan and Zhuhai China, this experience has given him an exceptional understanding of the cultures of Xtera’s diversified customer base.
Tony Frisch, Chief Technical Officer
Tony joined Xtera in 2004 initially managing Marketing and Proposals for terminal equipment and upgrades and then responsible for products such as Repeaters and Branching Units, and now serves as CTO.
Tony started work at BT’s Research labs investigating cable problems and then moved to Alcatel Australia, becoming involved in testing and commissioning submarine systems. A move to Bell Labs gave him experience in terminal design and troubleshooting, after which he went back to Alcatel France, where he worked in Alcatel Submarine Networks’ Technical Sales before moving to head Product Marketing.
Ricardo Franco, VP Sales Americas Region
Ricardo is currently responsible for Sales for the Americas in Xtera. He enjoys meeting new people and gets excited by innovation and new technologies. After 21 years in telecoms Ricardo is pleased to be back to the submarine industry, helping to connect the world.
As an Electrical Engineer who graduated at Sao Paulo State University, Ricardo has taken several roles in different areas, ranging from network deployment to sales, going through systems and sales engineering. He has made valuable contributions to companies such as NEC, Huawei, Tellabs and Coriant.
Ricardo holds a Master’s in Business Administration from FGV in Rio, and has vast sales experience growing the business of the companies he has worked for, while managing large accounts and territories. He has an extensive international history, having lived in Japan and travelled the world while interacting with different cultures and societies.
Ricardo is currently getting back into shape in order to run a few more marathons but loves being up late with friends – which creates a challenge…
Wayne Pelouch, Vice President of Photonics
Wayne Pelouch received his B.A. degree in Physics (Honors) and B.S. degree from Northwestern University in 1987, and his Ph.D. degree in Applied Physics from Cornell University in 1992. His thesis covered ultrafast lasers and nonlinear optical processes with applications in semiconductor physics. After graduation he joined the University of New Mexico / Air Force Research Labs in Albuquerque, NM and then worked for the Lions Eye Institute in Perth, Australia as a Laser Physicist. Subsequently, he joined Coherent Technologies (Lafayette, CO) where he was Principal Investigator on a number of SBIR programs related to waveguide laser and amplifier technology. Dr. Pelouch joined Xtera Communications in 2001 and is currently the Vice President of Photonics at Xtera Inc. (Allen, TX) where he leads all Photonics activities including research, product development, and system network design. He has authored numerous publications and patents related to fiber optics and amplifier technology.
Dylan Higginbotham, Vice President of Operations
Dylan joined Xtera in 2005 and has rapidly risen to become the Vice President of Operations. In the past he has held positions at Xtera of Buyer, Logistics Manager, Manager of Manufacturing Planning and Project Director while continuously managing previous responsibilities. Dylan has developed the Procurement, Logistics/Supply Chain and Manufacturing divisions of Xtera from one off arrangements to a dependable network of global partners.
While at Xtera he has performed procurement, shipping/receiving, inventory control, manufacturing test, domestic/global logistics, project management, project accounting, auditing, NPI and a variety of other activities which have given him a unique perspective on the business. Dylan has 12+ years of international logistics experience in the telecommunication industry and is well respected among several global forwarders to the point of consulting them on establishing new partnerships in challenging worldwide locations. Dylan has successfully managed project efforts for DISA(US/Caribbean), Cable & Wireless Networks(UK, US, Caribbean, South and Central America), and Exxon Mobil(Papua New Guinea). Dylan received his degree in Business Administration from the University of Texas at Dallas.
Dave Winterburn, Director Software Development
Dave joined Xtera in 2008 having previously been Director of Software Development at Azea. At Azea he was responsible for development of the embedded software in the SLTE and its associated network management systems. With Xtera his focus has been on embedded firmware for transponders and more latterly submarine plant such as repeaters and branching units.
Dave has 40 years of experience in software engineering in the telecommunications industry and for the last 25 years has worked in submarine telecoms. Dave joined ITT in 1977 to work on message switching systems, then joining ICL working on X.400 messaging and X.400 directory systems before joining Alcatel in the early 90s to work on submarine network management systems. He was a co-founder of Azea Networks in 2002.
Dave has an Honours Degree in Physics from the University of Manchester.