Meet the staff: Anthea Ye COO
Netlinkz has been able to recruit some large company executives for its Board and management team. Hakan Eriksson, a former Telstra Chief Technical Officer joined the Board in November 2022 while a few weeks before Anthea Ye, joined as Chief Operating Officer.
Like Hakan, Anthea is very well qualified in electronic engineering and business studies and both have a strong interest in the way the internet is evolving to support infrastructure and the “internet of things.”
Anthea spent twenty years in senior management roles with China Telecom in Beijing and Hong Kong, then for over a decade in Australia where she was the founding manager of China Telecom Australia, but when offered a promotion to head up CT’s business operations across Germany, Austria and Switzerland she was also offered a senior management role at Netlinkz.
“It was a difficult choice” she says. “It wasn’t that I was unhappy with China Telecom. In fact, it was very rewarding. I was able to land some big projects, like supporting Ali cloud’s expansion into Australia and investment in new submarine cable systems. As well as dealing with the big telecommunication companies in Australia, we also did a lot of work New Zealand and the Pacific region which was very interesting. I had mostly lived in Hong Kong before, so this was a whole new world for me”.
“But you could say it was quite ‘challenging’ from the outset. When I came here, I had to start from scratch, recruit staff and introduce myself to the local companies. It was quite daunting to give a speech to whole bunch of executives virtually in the first week, but soon the business began to grow grew rapidly as amore Chinese airlines began to fly into Australia and Chinese investment in mining and property accelerated.’
Anthea confesses it had its moments. “Telstra, for example, was quite different from other telcos I had worked with. I wasn’t used to one telecommunication company having so much market power. Dealing with New Zealand was very different. They were very easy to work with and did exactly what they said.
“I began to love working here and especially working from Sydney, so when the opportunity came to join relatively small, but fast-moving company with some remarkable technology and an innovative mind set I had some serious thinking to do.”
“I had just been offered an attractive post in Europe, so the choice was structure and stability – and perhaps a somewhat predictable working life — or on the other hand working with a creative company.
“I’m quite a creative person, or at least I try to be creative if I can, so working with Netlinkz had a strong pull. The VSN and the software around it are a very special and very relevant product.”
But, she says, innovation of itself is not the point. “I don’t like the idea of just selling something to people because its glitzy and new. To be effective you really need to solve a problem and give a service. That’s what we’re trying to do here. We are offering an eco-system to give support to a customer and make them pleased by what we offer. This is what is so satisfying my role here. The VSN is at the core of a turn-key solution which solves a number of problems – security obviously, speed, convenience, but of course it’s enabling. It allows businesses to be forward looking and creative. They can be far less constrained with their own ambitions. That’s the exciting part – we feel we can make a great contribution in all sorts of ways and in quite different countries. The alliance with SpaceX magnifies that even more.”