Vienna, late 1994. Back then, I was the European and Middle East Sales Director for Orion Network Systems (ONS). ONS had a good many operating VSAT licences and enjoyed established relationships with multiple installation partners across Europe. We were also in the enviable position of having designed a satellite that provided connectivity across both Europe and the US. Call it happenstance, serendipity or plain good fortune, we were strongly placed, just as the internet was becoming a thing and demand for it was about to go through the roof. However, at ONS, we were only too aware that our competitive advantage could quite easily be eroded by our VSAT competitors. It was clear to me that, going forward, licences needed to be obtained via a neutral industry-wide body, one that represented member interests rather than individual companies. This would ultimately be in everyone’s best interests as it would open up the entire VSAT market and enable industry-wide growth.
But this hardly a solo undertaking. I needed to consult with and secure the buy-in of industry experts and the first person I engaged was Susan Bull of Comsys. While Susan was supportive, she opined that at that juncture, it would be more appropriate for both her and Comsys to remain independent. A little while later, I had the opportunity to give a speech about a future VSAT industry forum. I was only too eager to lay out my vision and to ask if anyone present wished to sign up. Two prospective members stood out, Mike Cook of Hughes, and the then CEO at Gilat Europe. However, neither one was ready to commit to coming on board then and there. Then again, neither one wanted to be left behind and each realised that if one joined, the other would have to follow.
And so it came to pass that, several conversations later, we had four members, including Susan and me. And from there, a further year of dialogue ensued, resulting in the formation of an initial GVF committee, with David Hartshorn duly appointed as the first Secretary General. On account of my relevant expertise and experience, I was delighted to be asked to create a training course for the GVF. My initial offering was reviewed by Ralph Booker, CEO of SatProf, who subsequently built it into a professional training tool, which has benefited thousands of people around the globe. Looking back, I am incredibly proud of all that been achieved since those early days 25+ years ago, and immensely honoured to have had the opportunity to make a modest contribution to that success.
Jack Buechler, Talia
Jack Buechler is the Vice President of Business Development at Talia Ltd. He has over 25 years of sales and marketing experience in IT and telecommunications – making Mr. Buechler one of the industry’s leading experts. Past and current projects include definitions of satellite hub systems, integration of broadband satellite systems, terrestrial fibre services, VoIP service integration, Trunk VoIP systems, sales of integrated GSM satellite systems.
Mr. Buechler has worked in many business sectors including Defence, Oil and Gas, Retail and Financial. Mr Buechler’s current position is at Talia Ltd – a top-tier network provider in the Middle East, Africa, America and Europe. Talia Ltd known as a market leader and experts in satellite, voice, video and broadcast solutions with their own WTA tier 3 certified teleport facility in Germany.
Prior to working at Talia Ltd, Mr. Buechler has served at senior level positions at Loral Cyberstar, Orion Network Systems and Kingston Inmedia (Now Arqiva), and Advantech Wireless including: Vice President Sales EMEA, Head of Carrier and Internet Sales and product manager Satellite data products at BT.