Shekar Ayyar is a seasoned technology executive and industry leader with over twenty-five years of experience spanning general management, research, strategy, mergers & acquisitions and business development. Before joining Arrcus, Shekar was Executive Vice President and General Manager of the Telco and Edge Cloud business at VMware. He incubated and grew this business to become one of the largest vertical opportunities for VMware in the context of 5G and Edge Computing.
Prior to his General manager role, Shekar was EVP of Strategy and Corporate Development, leading VMware’s M&A and strategic investments for several years. From opportunity and target identification, to deal structuring, negotiation, and closure, he oversaw over 60 acquisitions and investments across a wide range of target companies and transaction sizes. These included the acquisitions of Nicira for software defined networking, Airwatch for mobility management, Velocloud for software-defined wide area networking (SD-WAN), Heptio for cloud-native Kubernetes orchestration, and Uhana for AI driven closed loop automation of mobile networks.
Before joining VMware in 2007, Shekar led product management and business development at companies like BindView, a compliance and security software company acquired by Symantec and Instantis, Inc. a web application automation company acquired by Oracle. In prior roles at other companies, including Lucent and McKinsey, Shekar advised C-level executives on a wide range of strategic technology and business decisions.
Shekar has an MBA from The Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania, where he graduated as a Palmer Scholar. He also holds a Ph.D. from the Johns Hopkins University and a bachelor’s degree from the Indian Institute of Technology, Bombay, both in electrical engineering.
Shekar is on the board of Altair as well as the regional board of Room to Read, a non-profit focused on supporting literacy and girls’ education globally.
Keyur Patel brings 20+ years of experience leading and executing complex networking projects at start-ups and market-leading public companies.
Keyur was a Distinguished Engineer at Cisco where he has played an instrumental role in architecting and developing Routing and VPN solutions including critical modifications to BGP, BGP NSR, L3VPNs, L2VPNs, EVPNS, MVPNs, Segment Routing, RPKI RTR Protocol, Interdomain Security, Routing Policies, and Routing Analytics.
Prior to Cisco, Keyur held senior engineering positions at AYR Networks (acquired by Cisco) and Tasman Networks (acquired by Nortel) where he was responsible for the design and development of Unicast and Multicast Routing Protocols, Routing Infrastructure, and Layer2 protocols.
Keyur holds 54+ patents in areas of Interdomain Routing and Security, Fast Re-Route Technologies, Network Service Chaining, Layer2 protocols, IPv6, TCP, VPNs, and Routing Virtualization technologies like Optimal Route Reflection.
Keyur is very active in industry forums including IETF and has authored 50 RFCs and Internet Drafts. He also serves as a co-chair for Secured Interdomain Routing Operations (SIDROPS) working group at IETF.
Keyur holds an MS in Computer Engineering from the University of Southern California (USC) and started his career working as a Research Assistant at USC’s Information Sciences Institute (ISI).
Ankur Prakash is a Partner at Liberty Global Ventures since 2012 and has invested $150M+ across 20 companies ranging from pre-revenue ones to those with an established product-market fit looking for growth. His core focus areas include enterprise software, cloud, mobility, core infrastructure and AI. Some of Ankur’s notable investments include Arrcus, Aviatrix, Awake Security (ACQD: Arista Networks), Guavus (ACQD: Thales), Lacework, Mindmeld (ACQD: Cisco), Mojo Vision, Plume, Pensando and Versa Networks.
As a Silicon Valley veteran, Ankur has held leadership roles in engineering, product management and strategy functions at various companies including Cisco, Alcatel-Lucent and Juniper Networks. Prior to Liberty Global, Ankur was at Juniper where he was responsible for Juniper’s core routing infrastructure platform. As part of Juniper’s venture investment team, he also worked on the investments in Violin Memory (VMEM), Vidyo and FireEye (FEYE). In 2003, Ankur was a founding engineer at NetDevices, where he led the development of industry’s first converged gateway product for mid to large enterprises. NetDevices was acquired by Alcatel-Lucent in 2006, and Ankur led the engineering and development of the Alcatel’s access products portfolio.
Ankur holds an MBA from Kellogg School of Management, a MS in Electrical Engineering from Purdue University and a BS in Electrical Engineering from the IIT Kanpur, India.
Guru Chahal is a partner at Lightspeed Venture Partners focusing on early stage enterprise startups in cloud, security, DevOps, observability, and enterprise IT. He first joined the Lightspeed team in 2012 and then joined the founding team at Avi Networks (one of his investments) to help build out the early stages of the business. Avi Networks was acquired by VMware in 2019. Back at Lightspeed after his time at Avi Networks, Guru leverages his founding experience, product expertise and extensive customer network in helping entrepreneurs through funding and beyond. During his operational career, he has been part of three product lines as they’ve gone from inception to over a billion dollar run rate. His previous roles include product leadership roles at Avi Networks (next generation application services), Nuova Systems (acquired by Cisco), and Tropos Networks (acquired by ABB). Guru started his career as a software engineer at Cisco Systems, working on distributed systems within networking and holds several patents in the space.
As managing director at General Catalyst Partners, Steve invests in early-stage enterprise start-ups, particularly in the enterprise space. Until 2013, Steve was CTO and SVP of Research and Development at VMware. During his tenure, Steve helped build a world-class 3,000-person engineering organization that delivered numerous industry-changing products; he was also named InfoWorld’s CTO of the Year in 2009. Prior to VMware, Steve co-led the development of a virtual CPU with “code morphing” technology at Transmeta Corporation, and held roles at SGI and MIPS Technologies. Outside of work, Steve focuses on the advancement of children’s education, particularly around STEM. Steve holds a PhD and a master’s degree in computer science from Stanford University, and a BA with distinction in computer science from the University of Texas at Austin.
Chris Rust is a founder and General Partner of Clear Ventures, where he invests intechnology companies. Prior to founding Clear in 2016, he spent 13 years as a Partner at Sequoia Capital and USVP. His seed and early stage investments include Abrizio (PMCS), Avanex (IPO AVNX), Dune (BRCM), GoPro (IPO GPRO), LVL7 (BRCM), Mellanox (IPO MLNX), and VxTel (INTC). He also spent 12 years in operating roles as a development engineer, network architect, and product manager. Chris was a co-founder and Lead Architect of broadband access pioneer Roadrunner (re-branded as Time Warner Cable Internet) . Roadrunner grew to 14 million subscribers, over $4 Billion in annual revenue, and was the key driver of Charter Communication’s $56 billion acquisition of Time Warner Cable. Chris earned a B.S.E.E. and an M.S.E.E from the University of Lowell, an M.S. Telecommunications Engineering and an M.E. Engineering Management from the University of Colorado, Boulder.