Charles Chi graduated from Carleton University in 1988 in Systems and Computer Engineering.
Mr. Chi has had a diverse career in high tech, from operating roles to venture capital investing. He started his career in Canada with Bell Canada and Unitel in engineering before assuming roles in marketing. In 1995, Mr. Chi moved to Silicon Valley in California to join communications equipment company Stratacom, subsequently Cisco, after Cisco’s acquisition of Stratacom.
Three years later, Mr. Chi co-founded Lightera Networks, an optical switching company. Lightera was acquired by Ciena and he became Ciena’s vice-president of marketing. Over a decade later, Ciena continues to ship the Lightera product with the technology originally designed by Lightera.
In 2000, Mr. Chi joined Greylock Partners, one of the original venture capital firms in the United States, Mr. Chi was a partner and board member, investing in early-stage technology startups in a range of industries – from service provider to enterprise through to consumer – engaged in both hardware and software businesses. Mr. Chi’s startups included companies located in the U.S., Israel and Canada, and have been acquired by companies such as Microsoft, Broadcom, Microchip and McData.
Today, Mr. Chi is executive chairman of Lytro where he has been actively involved in the company since its initial seed financing. Lytro was established from the founder’s award-winning PhD dissertation in computer science at Stanford University. Lytro is a startup which is developing a new kind of camera that will forever change how consumers take and experience pictures.