Intelsat Veteran Jumps to Imaging Startup Skybox

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WASHINGTON — Commercial satellite imaging startup Skybox Imaging has hired Intelsat veteran Tobias Nassif as its senior vice president for operations, responsible for flight operations, customer service, imagery production and ground station deployment, the Mountain View, Calif., company announced Nov. 15.

Nassif spent 11 years with Washington- and Luxembourg-based Intelsat, where he served as vice president of satellite operations and engineering and as vice president of operations. Intelsat is the world’s biggest satellite operator, with a fleet of some 50 satellites providing telecommunications services worldwide.

“Toby is one of the most seasoned operations executives in the satellite industry,” Tom Ingersoll, Skybox Imaging chief executive, said in a prepared statement. “His extensive experience and track record of reliably operating a large fleet of communication satellites over the last 20 years will be key to ensuring the successful deployment and operation of the Skybox constellation planned to begin in Q2 of 2013.”

Skybox is planning a constellation of small, low-cost satellites capable of providing imagery and video of anywhere on the globe within a couple of days of any request. The company says it has developed proprietary technology that makes it easier to store raw imagery and process it into useful data products.

“Skybox’s Silicon Valley-approach to deploying a low-cost, high-performance imaging satellite constellation has the potential to bring tremendous value to government and commercial customers worldwide,” Nassif said in a prepared statement. “I strongly believe in the opportunity ahead of me and look forward to working with what will be an industry-changing company.”