Free at Last
Brought together by venture capital firm Sequoia Capital, Bill Kish, 35, and Victor Shtrom, 40, shared a common vision for the future. They both recognized a need for a low-cost technology that would eliminate the typical problems of inconsistent Wi-Fi signals and thereby enhance wireless in-home multi-media streaming. Uniting their complementary skills--Kish had experience with networking, and Shtrom with radio frequency technologies--the pair became the pioneers of "smart Wi-Fi" technology in late 2002. In 2004, they launched their Sunnyvale, California, company, Ruckus Wireless. Says Kish, "It was essentially 18 months of working without salary and lots of uncertainty about the technology and about the market application."
Ruckus Wireless has since partnered with companies like Netgear and Motorola and has received $32 million in funding. In return, the business, which enjoyed $7 million in sales last year and projects more than double that this year, is enabling the widespread adoption of IP TV by making the deployment of the service more efficient and cost-effective.