|| ||Sharon Smith <linuxpr-AT-yahoo.com>|
|| ||News Item: Open-Xchange Announces New CEO, Board Positions|
|| ||Tue, 8 Jan 2008 09:43:59 -0800 (PST)|
Open-Xchange Announces New CEO, Board Positions
Board Chairman Laguna Becomes CEO, Former SUSE CEO Seibt Becomes Chairman, Former Nixdorf CEO
Woebker Joins Board
TARRYTOWN, NY, January 08, 2008 - Open-Xchange Inc., the leading independent provider of open
source collaboration software, today named co-founder and chairman of the board, Rafael Laguna as
the company's new president and CEO. Former SUSE CEO and Open-Xchange board member Richard Seibt
becomes chairman of the board. The company also announced that former Nixdorf CEO Bernhard Woebker
joined the board of directors as a new member.
Open-Xchange's award winning Smart Collaboration technology combines email, calendaring, contacts
and task management with advanced groupware features such as Documail and Document Sharing.
Productivity is enhanced through unique teamwork features, like team view, centralized document
sharing, and shared calendars, contacts, tasks and documents. In addition, the option of
synchronizing with Microsoft Outlook is available.
"Rafael is the ideal person for this position," said Seibt. "He formed Open-Xchange's strategy from
the very beginning and knows the company's employees, partners and customers like no other."
In 2001, Laguna initiated the technology partnership between Open-Xchange's development team and
SUSE Linux -- today a Novell business. The result of this partnership, SUSE Linux Openexchange
Server, became the best selling Linux-based groupware solution. Most recently, Laguna was crucial
to the extention of Open-Xchange's product portfolio and formed the partnership with the world's
largest web host by known servers, 1&1 Internet AG. 1&1 utilizes Open-Xchange's technology for a
range of 1&1 branded MailXchange email and collaboration packages that are offered to customers
worldwide. The partnership with 1&1 was the first step of Open-Xchange's Software as a Service
(SaaS) strategy to provide Internet Service Providers (ISPs) and web-hosting companies with email
and collaboration functionality to serve the small-to-medium enterprise (SME) market. Moreover,
with Open-Xchange Express Edition, the company launched a new turnkey solution for small and
medium-sized businesses integrating the increasingly popular Ubuntu operating system in August
"Open-Xchange is positioned at the crossroads of three mega-trends: Software as a Service, Open
Source and Mobile Devices," said Laguna. "Enterprises and system integrators have known for years
the cost efficiencies and business benefits of Open-Xchange. Now, Open-Xchange also delivers what
the telcos, hosters and service providers need to compete with Google, Microsoft, RIM and others -
to deliver higher level services to their customers."
Laguna, 43, began his career in 1985 at dicomputer. In 1989 he joined Micado, which made software
products for object-oriented development, as general manager and associate. Before selling the
profitable company to PMSC in 1995, he grew the company from 20 to 100 employees and to ? 15m
turnover. Later he worked as a business angel and consultant of software technology for several
Venture Capital Funds. From 2002 to 2004, Laguna was crucial to the investment and the successful
sale of SUSE Linux to Novell. From 2003 to 2006, he managed as chairman the turnaround of bäurer AG
until its acquisition by Sage. Rafael acts as board member for asknet AG (www.asknet.com) and
Changes in the Board of Directors
Richard Seibt, already an Open-Xchange board member, replaces Laguna as chairman. A former
president of Novell EMEA and CEO of SUSE Linux, Seibt was an executive board member at United
Internet - which has brands including 1&1, GMX, web.de, and AdLINK. Earlier in his career, Seibt
held a variety of positions at IBM -- including managing director of IBM Germany, where he owned
sales and marketing responsibility for IBM software products in Germany, Austria and Switzerland.
Later, Seibt moved to the US as a general manager of the worldwide software division.
Bernhard Woebker, consultant to various investment banking and venture capital firms in Europe and
the United States, joins Open-Xchange's board of directors. From 1997 until 2000 he held various
positions at Versant Corp. in Europe and the US. From 1994 to 1997, he was the president of Versant
Object Technology GmbH, an independently-owned distributorship for Versant products in Europe,
which was acquired by Versant in March 1997. Woebker also served as senior vice president Pyramid
Technology Corp. and as executive vice president NeXT Computer Inc. From 1976 until 1990, he held a
variety of positions in Germany and the United States with Nixdorf Computer AG, Nixdorf Computer
Engineering Corp. and Siemens Nixdorf Informationssysteme AG, including the position of president
and CEO of Nixdorf Computer Engineering Corp. Woebker is a board member at several IT and
technology companies in Europe and the US.
Open-Xchange Inc. is the innovator of scalable and integrated open source messaging and
collaboration solutions for small and medium-sized enterprises, academic institutions and
government authorities ("SME"). It products are available directly from the company, through
partners and Software-as-a-Service providers. Open-Xchange provides SME's with state-of-the-art
messaging and collaboration solutions traditionally only accessible to large corporations. By
empowering SME's, Open-Xchange helps them compete more effectively in the global economy.
Open-Xchange Inc. is a privately held holding company headquartered in Tarrytown, NY, with
research, development, and operations in Olpe and Nuremberg, Germany. For more information, please
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