Caspian taps Krause as CEO

Router start-up Caspian Networks Tuesday announced that L. William "Bill" Krause has been appointed the company's new president, CEO and chairman.

Krause replaces President and CEO Bill Sickler. Sickler and Caspian's board agreed the company needed new leadership now that it will soon bring its products to market, Caspian said in a statement.

"(Sickler) came in and addressed burn rate, the company's organization and processes, shepherded Caspian's product into beta trials at carriers and completed one of the biggest financings in venture history," said Caspian board member David Liddle, General Partner of U.S. Venture Partners. "Now that the company is entering a new phase, it needs to become a sales and marketing-driven company, and the most successful companies in this space typically have experienced marketing-oriented, customer-facing CEOs."

Ostensibly, that's Krause's forte. Krause was most recently CEO and president of Internet outsourcing firm Exodus Communications Inc., which was recently purchased by Cable and Wireless PLC.

However, Krause is perhaps best known for his tenure as president and CEO of 3Com Corp. through the company's high-growth years from 1981 to 1990. Under Krause's leadership, 3Com grew from a venture capital-funded start-up to become a US$600 million publicly traded data networking company with operations worldwide.

He was also chairman of 3Com's board from 1987 to 1993.

Previous to 3Com, Krause spent 14 years at Hewlett-Packard in various marketing and general management assignments. His last position at HP included worldwide responsibility for the company's personal computer business. From 1991 to 1998, he was president and CEO of digital imaging company Storm Technology, and has been president of LWK Ventures, a private investment firm, since October 1990.

Caspian recently landed a whopping $120 million in funding and has raised $262 million to date to bring its Apeiro core router to market. The product is currently in trials and is expected to debut later this year.

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