Google searches for Bayliff to join expanding subsea crew

Google searches for Bayliff to join expanding subsea crew


Google is advancing the reconstruction of its subsea team with the appointment of Nigel Bayliff, who will join the company in May, Capacity understands.

Bayliff’s imminent appointment means he will join Ricardo Orcero, former Facebook/Meta executive, who arrived in January, and Ian Clarke, formerly of Ciena, who joined this month.

Bayliff refused to confirm the move, but it is widely rumoured in the industry, and Capacity understands that it will happen.

People are “trying to be sensitive to the fact that people used to work at Google and don’t any more”, said one person about the new recruits, in a position to know but speaking on condition of anonymity.

Madrid-based Orcero spent almost nine years at what is now Meta, working “in partnership with carriers and hyperscalers identifying, planning, investing and supporting” construction of new subsea cables. Before that he headed global fibre acquisition for Cogent. His role is now global network acquisition at Google.

Clarke spent 24 years at Ciena, mostly in London, finishing as VP of global submarine solutions. He says on LinkedIn that he is now working within the Google global networking team, specifically tasked with helping to lead the global submarine team.

Capacity has been unable to confirm what Bayliff’s role will be once he leaves Aqua Comms at the end of April, though it’s understood he will join Google “later in May”, according to someone in a position to know.

Jim Fagan, currently chief strategy and revenue officer at Global Cloud Exchange (GCX), will replace him at Aqua Comms.

Top of Fagan’s agenda will be EMIC-1, the planned Europe Middle East India Connect subsea cable, which Aqua Comms is managing on behalf of its private-equity owner, Digital 9 Infrastructure (D9), also the lead investor in the cable.

Last month D9 said it plans £20 million investment in Aqua Comms in 2023 and £27 million on EMIC-1.

Bayliff became CEO of Aqua Comms in 2016, initially looking after the America-Europe Connect (AEConnect) cable. He had earlier been CEO of Huawei Marine Networks for five years until 2014.

Before that he was at Flag Telecom, which was bought by Reliance Communications in 2003 for over US$200 million and is now an element of GCX’s global infrastructure.

In conversations with people in the industry, Bayliff is understood to have said he was looking for “one last role” for about five years after his departure from Aqua Comms. That now seems to be Google.

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