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Optical/IP

Movers & Shakers: Help Pick 'Em

Look at you. Just sitting there, polishing your Swingline in your cluttered little cubicle, dreaming of the day when you'll be influential.

Get to work! We are about to start crafting one of the most prestigious lists we publish each year -- or twice a decade, depending on how far off schedule we are. And you can help us decide who gets to be among the Top Ten Movers & Shakers in Telecom (formerly the Top Ten Movers & Shakers in Optical Networking, even more formerly the Top Ten Movers & Shakers in Token Ring Technology, and, yes, even more formerly the Top Ten Movers & Shakers in Bentwood Furniture).

Per usual, we've let our Movers & Shakers list collect a fair amount of dust and debris. Because we are Fair & Balanced (TM) journalists with an investigative bent, we'll demonstrate exactly how lame and incompetent we've been. Here's our list history so far:

The passing of time -- and a few pints at lunch -- has made our 2003 list a hilarious read. Briefly, here's who we picked for that list and why some likely won't be on our upcoming M&S extravaganza:

  • Hossein Eslambochi – The former CTO of AT&T Inc. (NYSE: T) championed the "Concept of One". But late last year, when AT&T was swallowed by SBC Communications Inc. (NYSE: SBC), he demonstrated the "Concept of Done." (See Source: Eslambolchi Out at 'New' AT&T.)
  • Hong Lu – Since 2003, while the access marketing has been absolutely on fire, UTStarcom Inc. (Nasdaq: UTSI)'s market capitalization has fallen by nearly 60 percent. Maybe UTStarcom's CEO Lu has a sentimental attachment to the telecom recession and he just won't let go. Or maybe his company's in big trouble as the Chinese PAS market is taking it in the seat. (See UTStarcom Faces Nasdaq Delisting.) Whatever the reason, this Lu-zer's off our list.
  • Ron Martin – We think this former Fujitsu Network Communications Inc. CEO is still at Cisco Systems Inc. (Nasdaq: CSCO), but who knows? We once pegged him as a brilliant mind behind the scenes that would revive Cisco's optical business. (See Fujitsu's Martin Joins Cisco.) Well, there's "behind the scenes" and there's "downright obscure." Did he go into the Witness Protection Program? Martin was the indie film in our summer movie blockbuster binge and, quite frankly, he could have been party to a few more car chases and near-miss explosions to hold our attention. (See Cisco Denies Optical Slowdown.)
  • Greg Mumford – The one-time Nortel CTO should change his name to Greg Done-ford. (See McFadden In, Mumford Out as NT CTO.)
  • Ed Kennedy – We thought the former Ocular Networks CEO would be the main character in the next few chapters of the epic story of Tellabs Inc. (Nasdaq: TLAB; Frankfurt: BTLA). Instead, he didn't make it out of the foreword. (See No Naperville for Kennedy.)
  • Bobby Johnson – Like his hearty mustache, the Foundry CEO still has some character. But has he earned the nickname "Lumpy"? (See Foundry Scores a Near Miss.)
  • Niklas Zennstrom – Little Nicky, Skype's founder, has done well. We're proud of this pick. But how much influence can you have at a store that sells Ferret Watches? (See EBay Buys Skype for $2.6B.)
  • Bill Smith – BellSouth CTO Smith is still a good pick, but we suspect he might do an Eslambolchi once BellSouth Corp. (NYSE: BLS) goes back to Ma Bell.
  • Jim Dolce – His suits were made for walking. And that's just what he did. (See Dolce & Others out at Juniper.)

Whew! That was excruciating. But here comes the good part -- the part when you can lend a hand. Help us figure out who truly has power and influence in the telecom market. Who's got swagger? Who's got style? Who doesn't even have to wear a laminated name tag when they pass by the security desk in the morning?

Got someone in mind? Good. Send that person's name, title, and affiliation (and more importantly -- reasons why they deserve a spot on the list) here: [email protected]. We'll consider adding her and/or him to our list of finalists. Self-nominations are also welcome and will be given special consideration if one's accomplishments are hilariously exaggerated for entertainment purposes. Bad emails will be noted, quoted, bagged on, and blogged.

Or course, this list is highly Unfair & Unbalanced and open to all interpretations of what you think defines a Mover & Shaker. We look forward to hearing from you, but of course, we have the final say.

— Phil Harvey, News Editor, Light Reading

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DCITDave 12/5/2012 | 3:56:34 AM
re: Movers & Shakers: Help Pick 'Em Any ideas?

bw 12/5/2012 | 3:56:30 AM
re: Movers & Shakers: Help Pick 'Em here is my list:
-The CEO of Lu-Catel..This monster has a chance to redefine telecom, given the narrow playing field in NA carrier space, well only Verizon and ATT left, and they both are gambling on FTTX to drive future profitability, and Lu-Catel will be de-factor supplier..
-CEO of Huawei, Ren ZhenFei, you may not see him much, but he mocves and shakes everywhere..
-CEO of ZTE Mr. Hou, keep Huawei on its toe.

bw
interop-man 12/5/2012 | 3:56:24 AM
re: Movers & Shakers: Help Pick 'Em I am mildly surprised you didn't include the MEF's Nan Chen. He is a leader and mastermind behind the deployment of ethernet in the service provider world.
DCITDave 12/5/2012 | 3:56:23 AM
re: Movers & Shakers: Help Pick 'Em ZTE's a bit if a blind spot to me. They're not growing revenues and they seem bested by Huawei in most technical categories. Not sure if Hou is going to make it.

ph
DCITDave 12/5/2012 | 3:56:23 AM
re: Movers & Shakers: Help Pick 'Em Nan's a good marketer.

But does he really have that much influence? Give us a little more of an argument.

ph
Pete Baldwin 12/5/2012 | 3:56:21 AM
re: Movers & Shakers: Help Pick 'Em Ed Whitacre - if your company swallows AT&T and Bell South within a three year period I think you have to be Mover and Shaker by default if for no other reason than you now control half the US capex budget for both wireless and wireline.

hey, I like that! Ed can certainly look down his nose at just about anyone in this business and say, "Well, what have YOU done lately??"
optiplayer 12/5/2012 | 3:56:21 AM
re: Movers & Shakers: Help Pick 'Em Ed Whitacre - if your company swallows AT&T and Bell South within a three year period I think you have to be Mover and Shaker by default if for no other reason than you now control half the US capex budget for both wireless and wireline.

Larry Babbio - as head of VZ wireline he is ultimately responsible for the FiOS decision and implementation. Its a high risk strategy so by the time the next list is pubished he could be long gone.

Jagdeep Singh - this is an ode to the former list which focused on the optical industry. In the grand scheme of the global telecom biz, Infinera's achievements may not be that significant but in the post meltdown optical space I think their accomplishments are phenomenal.

Pat and/or Serge should be on the list given the magnitude of Lucatel/Alcacent though it all could end badly.

Carl-Henrik Svanberg - if you run the largest telecom equipment provider in the world (I don't count CSCO since they are still mostly an enterprise supplier) don't you have to be on the list? Ericsson's dominance of GSM/UMTS is highly enviable.

bw 12/5/2012 | 3:56:16 AM
re: Movers & Shakers: Help Pick 'Em Phil,
on ZTE: their revenue took a hit in growth last yr when Chinese carrier spending slows down to prepare CapEx for 3G spending..But look under the hood, their international biz growth fast (well, their move to global market is a bit behind Huawei). You should see more growth this yr. Their wireless gear is also selling well..
Financially, they are largest public listed telecom company from China, so it's more transparent (Huawei's book is a bit murky on the other hand..).

bw
FiberFan 12/5/2012 | 3:56:06 AM
re: Movers & Shakers: Help Pick 'Em Basil Alwan built Timetra during a tragic time for many startups and sold it to Alcatel. Alcatel built an entire business unit around him and Timetra's (Alcatel's) platform has become the number two platform in the IP Edge space. Alcatel has had major wins at major carriers based on this technology.

Sounds like a mover and shaker to me....

FF
tm1_queen 12/5/2012 | 3:56:05 AM
re: Movers & Shakers: Help Pick 'Em Not only Basil built TiMetra during the Gǣtragic timesGǥ, but made money for EVERYBODY who invested in the company. How would you like to invest in telecom equipment start-up in DecG99 and receive a double-digit return in JulyG03?
GǪ and thatGs the least investors receivedGǪ Anybody has a bet when the sale of ex-TiMetra products reaches $1B?
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