Executive Director
Verizon Ventures
Padmanabha (GOPAL) Rajagopalan is Executive Director of Corporate Strategy and Development responsible for marketing and venture development for Verizon Ventures. Prior to this, Gopal formed and led a group called New Business Ventures chartered with identifying and incubating new strategic businesses before formalizing as part of the product portfolio. Additionally, he managed key strategic service partnerships such as Google, Amazon, Microsoft etc. and successfully led business development negotiations with many of the strategic players. As part of charter in this and previous roles, he has been actively engaged in internal and external initiatives such as Innovation Days, Venture Forums and Intrapreneurship programs that have led to the discovery of disruptive companies with innovative concepts for enhancements to Verizon Wireless’ product & investment portfolio. Gopal has over 17 years of experience in the mobile phone industry as a researcher, engineer, product manager and strategic planner. Prior to this, Gopal was responsible for long term technology planning for handsets, supporting market research activities for handsets and formulation of Verizon’s handset portfolio based on market and business needs. He has played a key role in defining several handset platform (OS) and cost saving strategies for Verizon Wireless, now being implemented by the company. Gopal holds a MBA from the Wharton School, University of Pennsylvania, M.S. in Electrical Engineering from the University of Kansas and Bachelor of Science degree in Electronics and Communications (graduated top of class) from Anna University, India. Before joining Verizon, Gopal worked for several years in Motorola Inc., holding various positions in research and development, program management and product management. While in R&D, he was one of the primary software architects of the TDMA handsets, that were sold to major carriers in the US and Latin America (over 10 million). He holds patents in push-to-talk based technology and RF enhancements to cellular telephony and few other patents in pursuit in the area of handset user experience and application revenue streams. His interests include tennis, golf, travel, astrology and learning Sanskrit.