Mr. Sharma is a proud product of the Alberta technology innovation and education system. As an engineering graduate student at the University of Alberta and TRLabs, his research work in the field of Digital Communications led to a collaborative work with the National Research Council. Mr. Sharma extended his work in fiber optics into a Ph.D. program with TRLabs and University of Alberta. The industry-university collaborative research environment in Alberta has served as a cornerstone of his skill-set professionally.
Upon completing his Ph.D., Mr. Sharma was recruited to join a Stanford University spin-out company in silicon-valley, followed later by his launch of ONI Systems, a start-up optical networking company powered by a core set of employees including several from Canada. As Founder & CTO, Mr. Sharma led the technology development of world class Metro fiber optics communication systems for the company. In 2000, ONI had a successful IPO, and two years later it was acquired for $900 million by Ciena, the world’s third-largest telecom company.
As an investor with True Ventures, a leading bay area venture capital firm, Mr. Sharma continues to be deeply ingrained into the Silicon Valley founder-led ecosystem of technology innovation. His industry exposure extends across all aspects of the broad ICT sector and his board responsibilities include industrial and chemical applications of genomics and new optical manufacturing technologies. His collaboration network extends into India through his investment in India based startups and venture funds. He is loyal to Alberta and appreciates how the innovation system in the province launched and shaped his career. In 2004 he endowed a professorship in Digital Communications at the University of Alberta to support research and technology development in Alberta.