Skip to main content

Solekai Taps Wind River's Thompson As CTO

Engineering services firm Solekai Systems has tapped Marco Thompson, previously chief technology officer for services at embedded-software company Wind River Systems, to be its new CTO spearheading business development focused in the cable, direct-broadcast satellite and consumer-electronics markets.

San Diego-based Solekai provides software engineering services specializing in design, development, integration and testing for digital video, government and "smart grid" industries.

Thompson, in an interview last week at the 2010 Consumer Electronics Show, said that Solekai will be increasingly looking at development projects involving IP-based set-top boxes and related applications. "There aren't enough systems engineers around the world to do all these projects," he said.

Most recently Thompson was CTO of Wind River's services arm, responsible for projects that included digital video set-top boxes, high-resolution video cameras and portable consumer gadgets. In 1984, he founded Doctor Design, an embedded engineering services firm that he later sold to Integrated Systems, which merged with Wind River in 2000. Intel acquired Wind River in June 2009 in a deal worth $884 million.

Solekai president Martin Caniff previously worked with Thompson when Caniff was president of Doctor Design, among other projects. "This is our fourth opportunity to work together over 30 years, and I am looking forward to the collaboration," Caniff said.

Thompson also is a managing partner in an early-stage venture capital firm, Express Ventures, which has funded eight San Diego companies, including MaintenanceNet, Eyespot and Certona. He will split his time between Express Ventures and Solekai.

Also prior to joining Solekai, Thompson co-founded CommNexus San Diego, a non-profit network of communications, government, and defense industry companies. He will continue to chair or sit on a number of advisory boards in Southern California.

Solekai had once been engaged in testing services for digital video products. In 2008, the company sold its 7,000-square-foot testing and engineering facility in Boulder, Colo., to interactive TV software startup enableTV, formed by the founders of Vidiom Systems. As part of that deal, about 10 Solekai employees joined enableTV.