Jay Swayze – President & Chief Executive Officer
Jay Swayze is the founder and CEO of bluArc Hosted Business Phone and Internet Services, one of Canada’s first and largest Hosted Business Phone and Internet Service providers. Jay is responsible for the company’s overall strategy and direction with a focus on increasing shareholder value.
Jay brings a wealth of experience in the areas of telecommunications, information technology and networking. Prior to founding bluArc, Jay held a number of telecommunications sales and sales management positions with Natural Convergence, Linmor Technologies, Compaq and Digital Equipment
Over his 18 years in Telecommunications and Information Technology, Jay has managed sales and technical teams in the delivery of telecommunications products and services worldwide—spanning technologies from enabling the Internet to technologies delivering voice and voice over Internet protocol. Additionally, Jay has extensive technical knowledge in networking, VoIP, SS7 and network management
Rick Koenders – Chief Operating Officer
Rick Koenders has over 20 years of direct telecommunications experience working with telecommunications carriers, equipment manufacturers and telecommunications software developers.
Prior to joining bluArc, Rick held positions in telecommunications sales and business development with Digital Equipment Corporation (Global Account Manager, Nortel); Mitel (Director, Business Development); Zultys, Inc. (Country Manager); and NewHeights (Director, Business Development).
Rick’s extensive experience and broad based knowledge in telecommunications—from carrier services to end user applications—provide him with unique insight on current and future telecommunications trends. He leverages this knowledge through constant customer and partner engagements, as well as through writing numerous blogs and articles.
Sheldon Stevens – Chief Financial Officer
As Chief Financial Officer of bluArc, Sheldon Stevens is responsible for providing strategic input and tactical guidance on the company’s financial operations to drive shareholder value.
Previously, Sheldon worked with Ernst & Young’s accounting and management consulting groups before joining Husky Injection Molding Systems. In 1995, he joined Deloitte Consulting, managing projects within both the Value Based Management and Change Leadership service lines. He was a founding shareholder of VOCI, a pioneer in using voice response technology to automate customer call centers, as well as UnCommon Grounds, a chain of coffee shops.
Over the past 11 years, Sheldon has been the CFO for over a dozen companies, including DNA Genotek, Fuel Industries, Risk Sciences International, IPeak Networks, Embotics Corporation and Privacy Analytics. He has sat on the board of HireTopTalent Inc., Network Planning Systems, IPeak Networks, and MyHealth Interactive Magazine and Agent App.
Sheldon is a qualified Chartered Accountant.
Larry Poirier – Chief Strategy Officer
As Chief Strategy Officer, Larry Poirier is responsible for ensuring corporate strategy drives success for the organization, and delivers enhanced value to bluArc’s customers. Larry’s focus will be to enable bluArc to deliver its hosted PBX services to a wide range of customers at market leading prices.
Previously, Larry was President of TUC Managed IT Solutions responsible for strategic planning, networking and the TUC product and service vision. Larry was also the founder and CEO of Nitro IT Business Solutions—a $50M+ information technology services provider in Ottawa. In March 2012, Nitro was acquired by TUC.
An entrepreneurial specialist, Larry has been an early stage investor with numerous startups, and he has acted in an advisory role with a number of other startup technology companies. In 1999, he co-founded Nitrosoft (later N-able Technologies Inc.), which was sold in 2013 to SolarWinds (NYSE: SWI) for $120 Million. In 2010, Larry became CEO of LW Capital Pool Inc., publicly listed on the TSX-V to fund technology firms.
Larry serves on the board of directors of the Canadian IT Providers Association and Exploriem.org. He also served as Canadian Chairman of the VentureTech Network; was voted Young Entrepreneur of the Year for Ottawa in 1999; and won the Ottawa Business Journal Top 40 under Forty award. Larry is a Queen’s University MBA Graduate, and a fellow of the QuantumShift program from the Richard Ivey School of Business.
Steve O’Brien – Vice President Sales
Steve is responsible for the management of bluArc’s Canada-wide sales and sales engineering teams. With a specific focus on empowering small and medium businesses with world-class Hosted Business Phone and Internet services, Steve and his team have been the cornerstone of bluArc’s explosive growth since its founding in 2005.
Steve joined BluArc with over 25 years of telecommunications, sales and management experience with companies such as Cantel, Octel, Lucent and Avaya, where he managed both direct and channel sales teams.
Steve’s in-depth knowledge of telecommunications, specifically the needs of small and medium businesses, makes him both an excellent mentor to his sales team and a valuable, trusted advisor to bluArc’s existing and prospective customers.