Former HP Exec Now CEO Of Networking Start-up S2io

Company to debut 10G Ethernet wares

Dave Zabrowski, formerly a top executive in Hewlett-Packard Co.'s PC operations group, has left the company to head S2io Technologies, a start-up specializing in 10G bit/sec. Ethernet products for corporate networks.

Zabrowski will be president and CEO of S2io, which early next year plans to introduce network interface cards (NIC) that use the 10-Gigabit Ethernet standard. The Cupertino, Calif.-based company aims to bring the Ethernet interconnects between data centers and enterprise LANs and WANs up to speed with high-speed I/O technologies that are now emerging inside data centers, Zabrowski said.

Zabrowski said the process of merging HP with Compaq Computer Corp. gave him an impetus to leave, although the 16-year HP veteran noted that he had been seeking a more entrepreneurial opportunity before the acquisition.

Zabrowski was vice president and general manager of HP's personal computing organization in Roseville, Calif. In that role, he said, he was responsible for commercial desktops, notebooks and handheld computers, as well as servers based on Intel chips and Windows, for North America.

"With the merger with Compaq, there were decisions made as to which products and which businesses were going to be Compaq-led and which would be HP-led, and market positions tended to dominate those decisions, [and in the PC organization] most of those posts went to Houston," he said, referring to Compaq. Zabrowski added that he agreed with those decisions.

"For me, the timing was convenient," said Zabrowski, who left HP earlier this month.

S2io has developed its own application-specific integrated circuit (ASIC) for 10G bit/sec. Ethernet and intends to sell NICs built around that ASIC under its own name. The company is also considering other arrangements involving the use of its technology, he said.

S2io was founded last September and currently has about 40 employees.

Intel Corp. earlier this year demonstrated a 10G bit/sec. Ethernet NIC and said it expected to ship the product in volume to server makers by the end of next month. Intel's aggressive move into the new technology, which included massive investments and acquisitions to develop optical networking components, doesn't scare Zabrowski.

"If the customers say we have superior technology, we will be in a leading position," he said.

Lawson writes for the IDG News Service.

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