Lidar, Inc. today announced Anand Gopalan as its new CEO. Gopalan,
who previously was Velodyne’s CTO, assumes the position from Velodyne’s
legendary founder David Hall. Hall will continue as full-time Chairman
of the Board and remain actively involved in directing the company’s
technology, product vision and business strategy.
This press release features multimedia. View the full release here:
Velodyne Lidar, Inc. announced Anand Gopalan as its new Chief Executive Officer (CEO). (Photo: Velodyne Lidar)
Gopalan is a distinguished engineer and technology executive with
experience building and leading worldwide engineering organizations. He
came to Velodyne in 2016 to form an advanced research and development
team. Gopalan leads Velodyne’s customer-focused technology and product
development teams to address market needs for lidar solutions designed
for high performance, cost optimization and high-volume production.
Over the past three years, Gopalan has worked closely with Hall to
develop the company’s technological roadmap and strategic vision.
Gopalan is recognized across the industry as a thought leader in
business as well as in technology. Recently, Gopalan became more active
as a spokesman for the company, expertly explaining the benefits and the
workings of lidar to audiences around the world. It is the policy of
Velodyne to promote from within the company and Gopalan was a natural
choice, having proved himself in 2019.
Gopalan and the Velodyne team look forward to building on the company’s
growth trajectory. Due to the breadth and versatility of the Velodyne
lidar portfolio, the company continues to make revolutionary
contributions to the ever-expanding autonomous industry. Velodyne is a
recognized leader in a wide range of markets including automotive,
mapping, on-demand mobility, robotics, security, unmanned aerial
vehicles (UAV) and more.
Under Gopalan’s leadership alongside Hall, Velodyne brought to market a
series of breakthrough lidar products, including the Alpha Prime™,
Velarray™, VelaDome™ and a new game-changing lidar sensor, soon to be
used for powerful Advanced Driver Assistance Systems (ADAS). Due to its
low cost, this sensor will advance automotive safety for the everyday
car owner. At CES 2020, Velodyne will unveil the new lidar sensor and
Gopalan will discuss his vision for the company at a press conference in
booth #7520 on Tuesday, January 7, at 11:00 a.m. PST.
David Hall invented groundbreaking 3D lidar sensor technology in 2005
which set the stage for revolutionizing the automobile industry and was
the foundation for Velodyne’s market leadership. The idea of leveraging
lidar technology for autonomous driving came to Hall while participating
in the DARPA Grand Challenge for autonomous vehicles. Holding more than
30 U.S. patents, Hall is a technology visionary and serial inventor
covering a variety of applications, including lidar, audio and marine.
The Intellectual Property Owners Education Foundation presented Hall
with its 2018 Inventor of the Year Award.
“Anand Gopalan and I have worked side-by-side on Velodyne’s technology
roadmap. He is the right executive to lead Velodyne in its next growth
phase,” said Hall. “His finger is on the pulse of customer and market
needs while possessing the technical brilliance and leadership skills to
innovate and deliver. As Chairman, Anand has my full support while I
continue to provide vision, strategize and invent.”
“David Hall is more than the founder of Velodyne, he is also the founder
of our industry. I am grateful for the trust he has placed in me and
excited to lead a company with such a deep history in innovation as
Velodyne. We are the forefront of our market, ready to drive the age of
autonomy. Velodyne is bringing improved mobility and safety through
versatility, responsiveness and agility,” said Gopalan.
Elevating Gopalan to CEO will enhance the leadership team at Velodyne
Lidar, running day-to-day business as the company addresses U.S. and
global market opportunities. Gopalan and Hall will continue to be
supported by a strong bench of Velodyne executive C-staff, including
Marta Hall, Chief Marketing Officer (CMO), Rick Tewell, Chief Operating
Officer (COO), Mike Jellen, Chief Commercial Officer (CCO), Drew Hamer,
Chief Financial Officer (CFO), Barbara Rogan, General Counsel, and
Mircea Gradu, Senior Vice President of Product and Quality.
About Velodyne Lidar
Velodyne provides smart, powerful lidar solutions for autonomy and
driver assistance. Headquartered in San Jose, Calif., Velodyne is known
worldwide for its portfolio of breakthrough lidar sensor technologies.
Velodyne’s Founder, David Hall, invented real-time surround view lidar
systems in 2005 as part of Velodyne Acoustics. Mr. Hall’s invention
revolutionized perception and autonomy for automotive, new mobility,
mapping, robotics, and security. Velodyne’s high-performance product
line includes a broad range of sensing solutions, including the
cost-effective Puck™, the versatile Ultra Puck™, the autonomy-advancing
Alpha Prime™, the ADAS-optimized Velarray™ and the groundbreaking
software for driver assistance, Vella™.