LightSquared's Ahuja resigns as CEO

The company says it's looking for a replacement and still hopes to build its LTE network

LightSquared Chairman and CEO Sanjiv Ahuja has resigned his CEO post, in the latest change to rock the company that still says it wants to build a 4G network using frequencies next to the GPS spectrum band.

Chief Network Officer Doug Smith and Chief Financial Officer Marc Montagner will serve as interim co-CEOs while the company searches for a permanent replacement, the company said on Tuesday. Ahuja will remain chairman of the board. Meanwhile, Philip Falcone, CEO of parent company Harbinger Capital Partners, has joined the board.

LightSquared reiterated its plan to build an LTE (Long-Term Evolution) network using spectrum adjacent to the GPS band, despite findings of interference between the two systems that led regulators to effectively shut down the company's plans. On Feb. 14, the U.S. Federal Communications Commission (FCC) said it planned to indefinitely suspend the company's right to build a cellular network.

Ahuja, the former CEO of French mobile network operator Orange, joined LightSquared in 2010. Smith came to the company from WiMax mobile operator Clearwire. Montagner is a former Sprint Nextel executive who engineered Sprint's merger with Nextel in 2004.

Falcone said LightSquared will work with the appropriate entities to resolve its regulatory issues and is taking "an aggressive approach" to its finances to ensure the company can continue to operate. Executives have said repeatedly that LightSquared has enough capital to continue operating for several quarters, but the company reportedly has recently laid off 45 percent of its workforce.

LightSquared operates a satellite mobile broadband company and hopes to build a national LTE network, offering coverage throughout the U.S. with higher LTE speeds in populated areas. It would sell service on both of those networks at wholesale to other carriers, who could offer either or both types of service to consumers. However, the prospects for that business model have dimmed since the FCC's decision in the wake of tests showing interference between the LTE network and GPS.

Stephen Lawson covers mobile, storage and networking technologies for The IDG News Service. Follow Stephen on Twitter at @sdlawsonmedia. Stephen's e-mail address is

Join the newsletter!


Sign up to gain exclusive access to email subscriptions, event invitations, competitions, giveaways, and much more.

Membership is free, and your security and privacy remain protected. View our privacy policy before signing up.

Error: Please check your email address.
Keep up with the latest tech news, reviews and previews by subscribing to the Good Gear Guide newsletter.

Stephen Lawson

IDG News Service
Show Comments


James Cook University - Master of Data Science Online Course

Learn more >




TerraCycle Zero Waste Box Pens and Markers Small

Learn more >

Back To Business Guide

Click for more ›

Most Popular Reviews

Latest Articles


PCW Evaluation Team

Christopher Low

Brother RJ-4230B

This small mobile printer is exactly what I need for invoicing and other jobs such as sending fellow tradesman details or step-by-step instructions that I can easily print off from my phone or the Web.

Aysha Strobbe

Microsoft Office 365/HP Spectre x360

Microsoft Office continues to make a student’s life that little bit easier by offering reliable, easy to use, time-saving functionality, while continuing to develop new features that further enhance what is already a formidable collection of applications

Michael Hargreaves

Microsoft Office 365/Dell XPS 15 2-in-1

I’d recommend a Dell XPS 15 2-in-1 and the new Windows 10 to anyone who needs to get serious work done (before you kick back on your couch with your favourite Netflix show.)

Maryellen Rose George

Brother PT-P750W

It’s useful for office tasks as well as pragmatic labelling of equipment and storage – just don’t get too excited and label everything in sight!

Cathy Giles

Brother MFC-L8900CDW

The Brother MFC-L8900CDW is an absolute stand out. I struggle to fault it.

Luke Hill


I need power and lots of it. As a Front End Web developer anything less just won’t cut it which is why the MSI GT75 is an outstanding laptop for me. It’s a sleek and futuristic looking, high quality, beast that has a touch of sci-fi flare about it.

Featured Content

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?