After five years, Grivner out as CEO of Colt; Gilder replaces him

After five years as Colt Technology Services' CEO, Carl Grivner steps down. Keri Gilder takes over as CEO after joining Colt in 2018 as its chief commercial officer. (Colt Technology Services)

After five years at the helm of Colt Technology Services, Carl Grivner has stepped down as the company's CEO. Effective Wednesday, Keri Gilder, who was hired as Colt's chief commercial officer in November of 2018, is the new CEO.

Colt racked up numerous big accomplishments during Grivner's tenure, including the development of its software-defined networking (SDN) and network functions virtualization (NFV) architecture, as well as the launch of inter-carrier APIs, blockchain, universal customer premises equipment, cloud access, integration with cloud providers, and SD-WAN services and applications.

"Colt has always been determined to be ahead of the curve," Grivner said in a statement "It’s why we invested in high bandwidth connectivity, blockchain and APIs, even before we saw customer demand for these innovative solutions. It has been a privilege to lead an organization during such a transformation, and it’s been an honor to have the backing of the board, my team and the wider organization as we pushed ahead with doing some things that haven't been done before.

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"I am proud to be a Coltie, and I can’t wait to see where Keri takes the business—it’s in incredibly capable hands.”

RELATED: Colt launches On Demand services in U.S. and other countries

Colt built out its IQ Network, which now reaches 29,000 on net buildings and more than 900 data centers while serving more than 25,000 customers globally, during Grivner's stint as CEO.  After entering the U.S. market in 2018, Colt launched its On Demand services across the U.S., Hong Kong, Portugal, and Austria early last year.

RELATED: Colt CEO Grivner: SDN and employees shine in time of coronavirus pandemic

In an interview with FierceTelecom last month, Grivner spoke about how his company's transition to SDN helped it react quickly to the fallout from the coronavirus pandemic, and about how proud he was of Colt's 5,000 employees who were working from home.

Colt didn't provide any additional insight as to why Grivner stepped down as CEO, but he will continue to work there until the end of June.

“The past five years have been momentous for Colt, and a big part of that comes down to Carl’s leadership," said Colt Chairman Michael Wilens, in a statement. "He will be missed. However, it is exciting that his shoes can be filled by someone within the Colt family. In her 18 months at Colt, Keri has brought in fresh energy to the business, and we know the next five years are going to be just as successful for Colt as the last.”

Prior to joining Colt, Gilder spent over 22 years in various roles at Ciena.

"I am honored to be taking over the leadership of Colt from Carl," Gilder said in a statement. "Ever since joining the business, I have been inspired by the passion of my colleagues. From our drive to remain vigilantly focused on delivering the very best for our customers, to our use of innovative and new technologies to advance the industry.

“This passion has always come from the top. However, you’d be hard-pressed to find someone who hasn’t been inspired by Carl and his love for this industry and Colt. Colt is in a great position to thrive during this time of significant transformation, through our steadfast focus on our customers, partners, and our drive to create an inclusive environment within Colt and across the industry. I couldn’t be more excited to lead this organization."

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