Irishman to head up Siemens global communications business

3 Oct 2008

An Irishman who has headed up multi-billion dollar IT corporations has been selected to head up the €3.2bn-a-year Siemens Enterprise Communications, a joint venture between Siemens and equity firm the Gores Group.

James O’Neill (54), who became a US citizen in 1976, has extensive international executive management experience with an emphasis on networks and electronics, as well as large-system integration, communications and computer technology.

He most recently served as CEO of CompuDyne Corporation, a leading provider of products and services to the public security market. CompuDyne is also owned by the Gores Group.

Prior to joining CompuDyne, O’Neill served for four years as president of Northrop Grumman Corporation’s US$4.5bn Information Technology sector, one of the world’s leading providers of advanced IT engineering and business solutions for government.

Previously, he served as president of the sector’s Computing Systems business, a value-added reseller of networking, enterprise computing, security and storage solutions and services.

Before joining Northrop Grumman in 2002, O’Neill held a variety of key industry positions, including roles as senior vice-president and general manager of Oracle Services Industries, where he led the company’s sales and consulting groups in the worldwide communications and utilities sectors.

He also served as president of the Government Solutions business unit at Lucent Technologies, and vice-president and general manager of Digital Equipment Corporation’s Federal Government Region, where he managed Digital’s government business worldwide.

In the coming months, O’Neill’s priorities will include merging the Siemens Enterprise Communications business with two of Gores’ current portfolio companies – Enterasys, a network equipment and security solutions provider, and SER Solutions, a call centre software company.

The combination of these three entities will create a more complete enterprise communications and data networking offering, featuring world-class products, solutions, and services for the unified communications market, all based on the company’s Open Communications positioning.

By John Kennedy

John Kennedy is a journalist who served as editor of Silicon Republic for 17 years