You are here

Former Mitel and Nextel Senior Executive John W. Combs Joins ShoreTel as CEO

Facebook LinkedIn Google+ Twitter

SUNNYVALE, CA, July 30, 2004 - ShoreTel, Inc., the innovation leader in enterprise IP telephony, today announced that former Mitel Inc. and Nextel Southwest Area President John W. Combs, 57, has been named president and chief executive officer, succeeding Thomas T. Van Overbeek, 55, who will remain on the Board of Directors. The appointment of Combs comes on the heels of a highly-successful fiscal year in which ShoreTel revenues more than doubled between July 1, 2003 and June 30, 2004, with its most recent quarter bookings growing more than 60 percent compared to the previous quarter. Much of this explosive growth is attributed to stronger-than-anticipated demand for the company's new trend-setting IP phone family.

"I've laid the foundation for growth, and John is the right guy to take us to the next stage," said Van Overbeek, the popular and charismatic leader who grew ShoreTel revenues fivefold since joining the company in December 2001, implemented an exclusive channel selling model and positioned ShoreTel as the leader among the non-legacy players in the enterprise Voice over Internet Protocol (VoIP) market. "John is a proven leader in scaling organizations. His deep expertise in the voice business and intimate understanding of the sales channel will be invaluable in helping ShoreTel reach the next level. He also has the right values to sustain the partnership approach we have nurtured with our channel, customers and employees."

Before joining ShoreTel, Combs conducted an in-depth review of the company, including extensive conversations with channel partners. "ShoreTel has a great reputation for delighting its customers – the hallmark of any company looking to take the number one position in an emerging market," said Combs. "The momentum is here, and all the key elements are in place for ShoreTel to be the market leader – innovative and highly-differentiated technology, a passionate customer base, a solid financial foundation, enthusiastic channel partners, and a very talented team."

Combs' extensive résumé includes managing Mitel, Inc. when it was the largest volume supplier of PBXs in the US and launching Nextel's first wireless digital network. He joins ShoreTel from wireless infrastructure supplier Littlefeet, where he served as CEO and Chairman. Before that, he was CEO of InternetConnect, a broadband networking solutions provider.

While Southwest Area President of Nextel from 1993-1999, Combs launched the company's first digital network in Southern California and led the company in service revenue and positive cash flow every quarter during his tenure. He also has held executive positions with LA Cellular, Fujitsu Business Communications and Western Electric (now Lucent).

Combs currently serves as a member of the board for DMC Stratex Networks (NASDAQ: STXN), InfoSonics Corporation (AMEX: IFO) and LongBoard Inc. He holds an engineering degree from California Polytechnic State University, San Luis Obispo.

About ShoreTel, Inc.

ShoreTel is the innovation leader in delivering IP telephony to the enterprise. The company has shipped its groundbreaking solutions since 1998 and continues to outpace the rapidly expanding VoIP market with technological advances and 100% year-over-year growth. ShoreTel voice systems are designed to make businesses smarter, setting new standards for usability and manageability while reducing telecommunications costs. A uniquely distributed architecture extends enterprise-class voice services to every office and outpost, keeping employees fully connected wherever they go. A select group of channel partners provide top-notch service and support. For more information, visit http://www.shoretel.com or call 1-877-80SHORE.