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InPhase Technologies Names James Russo EVP Engineering

InPhase Technologies announced that James Russo has been named executive vice president of engineering for the company.

According to the statement, InPhase Technologies is a developer of holographic data storage recording media and systems. Based in Longmont, Colorado, InPhase was founded in 2000.

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Unedited press release follows:


Former Senior Vice President of Dot Hill Systems To Lead First Holographic Storage Product Release


LONGMONT CO – InPhase Technologies, the leader in holographic storage, today announced that James Russo has been named executive vice president of engineering for the company. He will lead all technical development for the commercial entry of the industry’s first holographic product, which InPhase has been developing for the past decade.

In a separate announcement, InPhase today announced that Art Rancis has been appointed CEO of the company, effective today. He was previously vice president of sales for InPhase. Kevin Curtis, co-founder of InPhase who was named interim CEO in March, will step down from his post.

Russo joined InPhase in 2008 as vice president of engineering, after having served as senior vice president of engineering for Dot Hill Systems, which had acquired Chaparral Network Storage, where he was vice president of engineering. He successfully led the product integration for the newly-merged entity, maintaining the company’s product introduction timelines. Russo was chief technologist of the newly-created NAS division of Hewlett-Packard in 2000-2001, where he led a team that developed future storage products for what is now a major revenue source for the company. A data storage industry veteran with more than 25 years of experience, he has also held senior-level positions with firms such as LSI, StorageTek, and Maxtor, among others. He earned a BSME degree from the University of Colorado and an MBA in Operations Management from Regis University in Denver, Colorado.

Signal Lake, a leading investor in next-generation technology and computer communications companies, acquired the majority stake in InPhase in March. Signal Lake was the founding lead investor in InPhase, which it helped spin out of Bell Laboratories in conjunction with the then-Lucent New Ventures Group in December, 2000. The company had raised more than $94 million in equity over five rounds of funding, and had produced the world’s first working prototype holographic storage system, dubbed Tapestry™, in addition to winning numerous industry accolades and awards.

“There is a rare level of optical storage expertise available to create a successful commercial product development team for a holographic storage product, and Jim Russo is one of those leaders who can help us cross the finish line with our first product,” said Rancis. “We welcome his insights and his keen focus; he has a team in place that will deliver on our stated promise of bringing the first commercial holographic storage product to market.”

InPhase will concentrate on delivering a high-density archival storage product for customers ranging from film and television studios to corporate enterprises and medical institutions. Initial InPhase customers have included the likes of Turner Broadcasting and Ikegami Electronics.

Curtis, who founded the company with former Bell Labs colleagues Bill Wilson and Lisa Dhar, helped InPhase amass the industry’s most comprehensive intellectual property portfolio related to holographic storage. He and his co-founders, along with Adrian Hill and Mark Ayres, recently authored what is believed to be the first comprehensive tome on holographic storage, ‘Holographic Data Storage: From Theory to Practical Systems,’ published by Wiley.

“I have known Jim Russo for a few years, and am tremendously impressed with his analytical and technical capabilities. He has helped us refocus InPhase in a direction that can create sustainable value from our enormous intellectual property trove,” said Bart Stuck, managing director of Signal Lake. “We are privileged to have Jim lead InPhase’s engineering efforts at this time.”

About InPhase Technologies
InPhase Technologies is the leading developer of holographic data storage recording media and systems. Based in Longmont, Colorado, InPhase was founded in 2000.

About Signal Lake
Founded in 1998, Signal Lake invests in early-stage computer, communications, telecommunications and network infrastructure companies. The firm has capital commitments of more than $275 million over five funds. Signal Lake is headquartered in Westport, Connecticut, and in Boston, Massachusetts and is comprised of leading technology investors and advisors.