Ethernet equipment

Tellabs Adds a CTO

For the first time in about two years, Tellabs Inc. (Nasdaq: TLAB; Frankfurt: BTLA) is bringing in a chief technology officer, yet another sign of the ongoing makeover CEO Rob Pullen is putting on the company.

The company announced today that Vikram Saksena will be taking the CTO role on Dec. 8. Tellabs hasn't had a formal CTO since January 2007, when J. Thomas Gruenwald left. At the time, the company said it was decentralizing the role, letting each technology group make its own plans. (See Tellabs Names CTO and Tellabs CTO Retires.)

Back in April, though, sources were telling Light Reading that Pullen -- who'd taken over in March -- would be looking for a CTO. (See DeWilde's Ride Ending at Tellabs and Tellabs Appoints Robert Pullen CEO.)

Saksena, 52, comes to Tellabs from the CTO's office at VOIP equipment firm Sonus Networks Inc. (Nasdaq: SONS). He's also a 16-year veteran of AT&T Inc. (NYSE: T).

Pullen's plans for Tellabs, as outlined in July, include an increased focus on international business, making moves such as digging into emerging markets to take on Huawei Technologies Co. Ltd. (See Tellabs Guns for Global Growth.)

Like everyone else in Ethernet, Tellabs also has plans on the mobile backhaul market. To show for its efforts, the company announced last week that it had gotten preferred vendor status with the 21CN project at BT Group plc (NYSE: BT; London: BTA). (See Tellabs Appoints Robert Pullen CEO and BT Uses Tellabs for Ethernet Backhaul.)

— Craig Matsumoto, West Coast Editor, Light Reading

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