POET Technologies Announces Appointment of Chief Executive Officer (CEO)
TORONTO, ONTARIO and STORRS, CONNECTICUT--(Marketwired - June 11, 2015) - POET Technologies Inc. (TSX VENTURE: PTK)(OTCQX: POETF) - developer of the planar opto-electronic technology (POET) platform for monolithic fabrication of integrated circuit devices containing both electronic and optical elements on a single semiconductor wafer - is extremely pleased to announce the appointment of Dr. Suresh Venkatesan as CEO of the Company. Dr. Venkatesan will commence his new position immediately.
Dr. Suresh Venkatesan was most recently Senior Vice President, Technology Development at GLOBALFOUNDRIES and was responsible for the company's Technology Research and Development. Dr. Venkatesan joined GLOBALFOUNDRIES in 2009, where he led the development and ramp of the 28nm node and was instrumental in the technology transfer and qualification of 14nm. In addition, he was responsible for the qualification and ramp up of multiple mainstream value added technology nodes.
Dr. Venkatesan is an industry veteran with over 22 years of experience in semiconductor technology development. Prior to joining GLOBALFOUNDRIES, he held various leadership positions with Freescale Semiconductor in Austin, Texas. Dr. Venkatesan holds over 25 US patents, and has co-authored over 50 technical papers. He holds a Bachelor of Technology degree in Electrical Engineering from the Indian Institute of Technology and Master of Science and PhD degrees in Electrical Engineering from Purdue University.
Mr. Peter Copetti, who has been serving as Interim CEO since February 2014, will continue to serve as the Company's Executive Co-Chairman.
"We are extremely pleased to have Suresh join the Company as our CEO. He has the unique skill set of product and device development and a deep understanding of the physics involved in the process. We have been looking for over one year for the perfect permanent CEO and I believe we have found that person. He brings tremendous leadership and foundry industry development and strategy experience. This is a critical milestone in the Company's succession plan as we continue our 'lab-to-fab' transition," noted Mr. Peter Copetti, Executive Co-Chairman of the Company.
Dr. Venkatesan commented: "I see immense market potential for POET Technology's III-V complementary semiconductor fabrication process. The industry is at inflection point where new innovative solutions are needed. Integrating electronics and optical devices on the same chip monolithically can revolutionize many segments of the semiconductor market. I am excited to be part of the team."
Dr. Geoff Taylor, POET founder added: "On behalf of the Board of Directors, I would like to express our most sincere thanks to Peter for his vision and his determination to take POET to the next level. The financial turnaround of the company was remarkable and is now complete. We are now focused on product development and achieving revenue. Peter raised the bar every day and executed tirelessly towards his vision for the company. He has assembled a great team both at the Board of Directors level and at the POET executive level which has substantially augmented our semiconductor industry experience to deliver on the POET Technology for our shareholders."
Dr. Venkatesan was granted 6,357,082 options to purchase common shares of the Company. The options may be exercised at a price of $1.40 per share for a term of 5 years from the effective date of his employment (the "Effective Date"), expiring on June 10, 2020. The option terms were determined based on current market price in accordance with the TSX Venture Exchange Policies and the Company's Stock Option Plan (the "Plan") and the options will vest as follows: 908,154 options on the first anniversary of the Effective Date, 681,116 options on the 18th month anniversary of the Effective Date, 681,116 options on the 24th month anniversary of the Effective Date, and 1,021,674 options on the 30th, 36th, 42nd and 48th month anniversary of the Effective Date.