Now that Clearwire is officially fading into the history books and execs are already leaving, it will be interesting to see if the Bellevue company spawns a wave of entrepreneurial activity in the Pacific Northwest. Well, here’s one group that’s already made the leap into startup land, raising some initial venture capital.
The company is called Alpental Technologies — presumably named after the famous ski slopes located about 60 miles east of Seattle. And it is led by two former Clearwire technologists — Pete Gelbman and Mike Hart — who left the company late last year. Gelbman worked at Clearwire for seven years, serving as a founding member of Clearwire’s CTO group and overseeing the company’s corporate research, systems engineering and intellectual property. Before Clearwire, he worked at ArrayComm and Arch Wireless.
Hart, who is serving as CTO of Alpental Technologies, was a principal systems architect at Clearwire and also served on the CTO’s research and development team. In that role, he was responsible for wireless communications technologies that in part helped to lower the cost per gigabyte of the company’s broadband network. A former researcher at Fujitsu Laboratories of Europe and UK Broadband, Hart holds an EB-1 U.S. resident visa, which is granted to immigrants of “extraordinary ability.”
So, what are these researchers kicking around?
At this point, they are staying pretty quite, with Gelbman telling us via email that they are operating in “quasi stealth mode” during this seed stage. However, the company has already pulled in cash, landing $850,000 of a $1.15 million round.
Stay tuned. We’ll be closely watching this one.