Razer enlists Rahul Sood of VoodooPC fame as advisor to its board of directors

「世界最高性能」Windows 8 タブレット Razer Edge や薄型ゲーミングノート Razer Blade を発売するなど、もはや周辺機器メーカーとは呼べない Razer が、VoodooPC の創業者で現マイクロソフトの Rahul Sood 氏をアドバイザーに迎えることを発表しました。

Rahul Sood といえば、1991年に高級ゲーミングPCメーカー VoodooPC を創業した人物。VoodooPCは単に最高級パーツを組み合わせただけだけでなく水冷などのテクノロジーを積極的に導入し、 " OMEN " や " ENVY " といったブランドで当時のライバル Alienware と並び称される存在でした。

その後は Alienware がデルに買収されると同時期に VoodooPCを HP に売り、Sood はHP内のVoodoo部門CTOに就任しHPのプレミアムライン製品に関わりました。現在は HP のブランドとしてなぜかプリンタにまで採用される名称「ENVY」も、元は VoodooPC時代に人も羨むPCとして登場したブランドです。

HPを2010年に退職した後はマイクロソフトに入社し、PCゲームやXboxビジネスの部門 IEB (Interactive Entertainment Business) のGMとして、最近は有望なスタートアップに投資する Bing Fund を立ち上げるなど活躍を続けています。

Razer の発表によれば、Sood は Razer 取締役会のアドバイザーとして、すべての製品ラインについて戦略的な助言をしてゆくとされています。Sood 本人のコメントいわく、Razer は人も羨む( Enviableな) 立場にあるすばらしい企業であり、自身が創業した VoodooPC の「魂の継承者」だと考えているとのこと。

PCゲーム用GPUがメインだったNVIDIA がARM系の独自プロセッサTegraでモバイルの雄になり、かと思えば自社製の携帯ゲーム機 SHIELDを発表したり、独自アーキテクチャを諦めたプレイステーションはクラウドゲーム企業を買収してPCアーキテクチャのPS4を発表するなど業界が混沌とするなか、Razer も将来の主要プレーヤーにのし上がる野望を抱いているのかもしれません。

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Rahul Sood Joins Razer as Advisor to Board of Directors

CARLSBAD, Calif.-Razer today announced the appointment of Rahul Sood as advisor to the Razer board of directors.

"I'm a fan of Rahul's work at VoodooPC, and it is our shared passion for PC gaming and technological innovation that makes his involvement with Razer so relevant and exciting," says Min-Liang Tan, Razer CEO. "In fact, it was his work at VoodooPC that inspired us to enter the systems business, and I believe his advice will be invaluable to us here at Razer."

Sood will provide strategic counsel on all aspects of Razer's business, from global operations to sales, marketing and product development, as the brand continues to evolve its business in the United States and abroad.

Sood is an inveterate member of the technology industry. He was appointed general manager of interactive entertainment business at Microsoft in 2011. In 2012, he started Microsoft's Bing Fund, a seed fund and startup incubator. As of March 2013, Sood is responsible for leading Microsoft's global startups team, which includes startup accelerators in China, India, Israel and Seattle, and the Bing Fund based in Bellevue, Wash.

Prior to his current role, Sood was an entrepreneur with an array of startups. He founded luxury and gaming computer manufacturer VoodooPC, which was acquired by Hewlett-Packard, bringing with it the ENVY product line and its related technology and design inspirations. He additionally co-founded an array of networking and educational software solutions for medical professionals, as well as transactional and educational platforms for retail investors and traders.

Sood's personal passions include using technology to improve wellness, including the development of technology-based products that help children with autism discover new ways to communicate. In his spare time, he enjoys playing video games (Counterstrike, Call of Duty, Company of Heroes and Forza, among others), wakesurfing & wakeboarding, paddleboarding, cycling, racing cars and spending time with his family.

"Razer is an extraordinary company in an enviable position and I'm really excited to join the business at such an exciting time in its history," says Sood. "I have admired Razer for many years. The company makes incredible products, their brand is thoughtful yet soulful, and they have a diehard and growing fan base. Moreover, the executive leadership is both inspired and inspiring. I see Razer as the spiritual successor to our previous work at VoodooPC."