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Private 5G Innovator Celona Expands Its Executive Team


Multiple industry veterans join to accelerate Celona’s business development, service provider sales, U.S. Federal sales, and growth operations

CUPERTINO, Calif., July 20, 2021 - Celona, the leading innovator of private 5G solutions, today announced the addition of six industry veterans to its executive team. These valuable additions come just as the market for private mobile networks is rapidly expanding and Celona’s business with it. Spanning the entire breadth of Celona’s operations, these latest members of the executive family include:

  • Laura Perrone, CFO
  • Ruchika Chopra, VP Growth Operations
  • Brad Jones, VP HR and Legal
  • Dariush Afshar, VP Business Development and Strategic Operations
  • Royal Collette, VP U.S. Federal Sales
  • Todd Gore, VP Service Provider Sales
“I would consider ourselves lucky to secure just one of these individuals for our team. I am thrilled beyond words to have all six join Celona,” said Rajeev Shah, co-Founder and CEO of Celona. “We recognize that our customers’ relationship with Celona is measured by the totality of their experience. To meet their expectations, we are investing in people and platforms to create these long-term customer partnerships, competitively differentiated and built for scale.”

Financial Leader Laura Perrone
Ms. Perrone will take the financial reins at Celona as the firm’s new CFO, managing all the planning, implementation, managing, and execution of all the finance activities for the company, including business planning, budgeting, forecasting, and negotiations. Ms. Perrone has served as the CFO for multiple B2B technology firms and has successfully guided these organizations through multiple market exits over the last 20 years. Her latest role saw her as VP, Corporate Strategy at Juniper Networks prior to her role as CFO at Mist Systems.

“Not only does Celona have the right technology to serve an exploding market, they have the right team in place as well,” said Ms. Perrone. “I’m thrilled to join this exciting and dynamic organization.”

Growth Operations Champion Ruchika Chopra
Ms. Chopra takes on the role of vice president, Growth Operations. Ruchika brings over 15 years of experience in building and scaling Go-to-Market (GTM) Operations for Systems and SaaS/HW solutions through both IPO (Nimble Storage: NMBL) and successful acquisitions (NMBL: HPE and Mist Systems: JNPR). Preparing companies for hyper-growth from a sales life cycle perspective is Ruchika’s area of expertise. She is known industry-wide as an expert CPQ/CRM architect. Ruchika will manage all aspects of sales and supply chain operations, working closely with her peers in product development, engineering, customer experience, and business operations to ready Celona for its next phase of growth.

“Both Celona and its market are on the cusp of significant growth,” said Ms. Chopra. “This is an ideal match for me, both in terms of timing and skill set. I’m very much looking forward to taking this organization to the next level.”

Industry Veteran Brad Jones
Mr. Jones brings decades of in-house counsel and HR experience to Celona. He has a demonstrated history of working in rapidly growing companies with SaaS-focused product offerings, as well as managing HR functions and facilities functions, including international expansions and global compliance. He will be handling all aspects of Human Resources and Legal for Celona. His last role was with Juniper Networks as the Associate General Counsel, prior to his role as head of legal and HR at Mist Systems.

“I’m looking forward to doing my part to continue to grow the amazing team here at Celona,” said Jones. “I’ve already been very impressed with the talent they’ve assembled thus far.”

Business Development Leader Dariush Afshar
Dariush Afshar, a long-time business development executive with leaders like Aruba, Cisco, McKinsey, and multiple venture-backed startups, joins Celona from AttackIQ, an enterprise security leader. He has two decades of operating experience in business development, corporate strategy, alliances, and more. He will be responsible for building Celona’s partner ecosystem across customers, partners, and third-party vendors.

“The team that Celona has assembled is truly world-class,” said Afshar. “That, combined with the incredible market opportunity for private 5G, made joining Celona an easy decision.”

U.S. Federal Sales Expert Royal Collette
Royal Collette will lead Celona’s efforts in building business relationships and securing new customers within the U.S. Federal government. Prior to his new position at Celona, Royal headed up sales for the Federal sector with wireless LAN leader HPE Aruba.

“Private mobile networks have immense potential for deployment within the Federal government,” said Collette. “I’m looking forward to leveraging my deep experience in private wireless technologies in this market to help Celona secure a leadership position.”

Service Providers Sales Guru Todd Gore
Todd Gore, Celona’s new vice president of Service Provider Sales, comes to Celona from Federated Wireless, where he led their global sales efforts. He will be responsible for worldwide sales to the service provider community, including wireless operators and other telecommunications providers.

“After working closely with managed service providers through all the “G” transitions, I know just how big of a market opportunity Celona is targeting,” said Gore. “Celona’s Edgeless Enterprise architecture serves as an ideal foundation for any operator interested in delivering private 5G services to their enterprise customers.”

Celona and the Edgeless Enterprise
Celona’s groundbreaking new approach to private 5G solutions in the enterprise is designed to deliver unprecedented operational agility and efficiency with tight integration with a multitude of existing enterprise network designs and compute platforms that support critical business applications. Named the Edgeless Enterprise architecture, it relies on a cloud-native network operating system and provides an all-in-one network service overlay that offers policy-based routing, QoS, and security segmentation functions. It also improves upon 5G network slicing principles with the unique Celona MicroSlicing™ technology to guarantee key service levels and a consistent application delivery experience.

Interested parties can find out more by reviewing Celona’s whitepaper hosted at https://celona.io/edgeless-whitepaper

Celona Media Contact: Jay Nichols, Nichols Communications, jay@nicholscomm.com

Celona Company Contact: David Callisch, Celona, david.callisch@celona.io