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Craig Barratt Resurfaces as CEO of Google-Backed Barefoot Networks

 Craig Barratt, the former head of Alphabet’s Access unit, has been named CEO of Barefoot Networks, a maker of speedy, programmable Ethernet switch chips that counts Google among its backers.

Barratt is taking the helm at Barefoot Networks following Google Fiber’s decision to pause its expansion plans and concentrate on current deployments as it continues to explore less expensive wireless broadband alternatives.  At the time, Barratt announced he was stepping down as CEO of Access but staying on to continue as an advisor at Alphabet, Google’s parent company. Prior to Google/Alphabet, Barratt was president of Qualcomm Atheros.

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He is joining Barefoot Networks amid the development of Tofino, a 6.5 Tbps Ethernet switch chip, which is in sampling mode, and Capilano, a software platform.

"I'm excited about Barefoot's vision to transform networks by enabling programmability in high-performance switching," Barratt said in a statement. "I'm delighted to join the team and to help them build on the incredible progress they are making in achieving that vision."

Barefoot launched in 2016 after spending two years in the product development phase. It’s backed by Google, Goldman Sachs Principal Strategic Investments, Alibaba, Tencent, Sequoia Capital, Lightspeed Venture Partners, and Andreessen Horowitz. It has raised about $155.35 million, according to CrunchBase.