Silicon Valley optical firm Infinera expands Kanata footprint

A California-based optical networks company flew several of its executives to Canada’s capital this week to announce an expansion of the firm’s “fastest-growing” R&D lab and kick off a hiring blitz in Ottawa.

Infinera, which creates products to facilitate high-speed transfer of information over optical networks, arrived in Ottawa in 2009 with an initial local workforce of three employees.

Since then, its presence has grown steadily to some 50 employees – a figure that’s expected to grow higher following this week’s announcement.

Infinera offices currently occupy 12,549 square feet on the second floor of the Blackwood Business Centre in the Kanata Research Park at 555 Legget Dr. and will be an expanding by over 6,000 square feet on the sixth floor to allow for the extra personnel as well as more lab and R&D space.

“The fast-paced connected-everything world is increasing the capacity requirements of telecommunications networks. We want to build the most intelligent optical networks for our customers,” said Parthiban Kandappan, Infinera’s senior vice-president of systems architecture.

“We seek to bring the best products to the industry and, to do that, we need to bring the best engineers to work for the company,” he added, speaking to the company’s Ottawa expansion.

Infinera
Parthiban Kandappan is Infinera’s senior vice-president of systems architecture. (Photo by Marc Shaw)

He called Infinera’s Kanata location the “fastest growing R&D department for the company” and said they are hoping to hire an additional several dozen engineers over the next couple of years to sustain that growth.

Mr. Kandappan said Infinera’s Ottawa lab is focused on R&D efforts related to optical engineering and software development for products that will benefit communications companies with large data needs such as Centurylink, which is one of Infinera’s largest customers.

This week’s press conference was followed by an open house for prospective employees.

- By Marc Shaw