October 27, 2017

Interview

Interview with our new CEO – Alfonso Barreiro

We have now appointed Alfonso Barreiro, a seasoned space sector professional, as our new CEO. Here’s a first short interview with him, the day after the announcement.

Welcome as new CEO at ÅAC Microtec! Could you please tell us a bit about yourself and your background?

Thank you for your welcome. I’m an Aerospace engineer. I always wanted to be an Aerospace engineer, since I have any recollection I wanted to work with “space things”.

I started out in the business working for the European Space Agency in 1987. For the last 20 years I’ve mostly been working in the private industry, with different space projects from different sides in the industry - always with a commercial outlook.

In 2001, I was one of the founders of Deimos and when we set up Deimos Imaging I became the VP Business Development for that. Then I moved into Deimos corporate, where I was part of the Deimos-2 mission that also was integrated by Deimos themselves.

In 2015, I took part in the acquisition of Deimos Imagining by UrtheCast and was a part of that operation - I was part of the team that went over to UrtheCast.

Since then I have been the VP business development in UrtheCast. That means promoting and trying to get complete satellite systems to be acquired and operated by customers. UrtheCast has two very big constellations that they are trying to launch and that has been very interesting.

Why did you decide to join ÅAC Microtec?

I was intrigued by the plans of moving ÅAC forward and expanding while at the same time maintaining the good reputation that the company has in the sector. It sounded like a very interesting plan and a great challenge for me as a challenge-driven person.

For me, business development is not only selling things, it’s also setting up new activities and organizing new ways to accomplish objectives.

You will hear me say this again and again: “Interesting things are seldom easy.” 

What do you aim to achieve for ÅAC in your new position?

I want ÅAC to be a well-oriented company that provides quality components for the whole range of our satellite platform and be a Tier 1 to the industry. And we must do this in a way that gives us a good reputation and international expansion. Fulfilling that vision, that’s the main aim.  

In your opinion, what are ÅAC’s key strengths?

The very professional way of approaching satellite subsystems and components in the Small Sat sector is key, which was one of the factors that convinced me.

I looked online and asked around and everybody told me that “yes, they’re good and their products are always good.” That was one of the things that convinced me to join ÅAC. In this industry, not all companies are like that – putting quality before other things.

I would also say that the Swedish approach is very important. Swedish industry in general is usually regarded as good quality. ÅAC microtec develop products that are reliable and good quality. That ethos, the way they are looking and doing subsystems and components, that way is important for me. 

And finally, will you move to Uppsala?

I will move to Stockholm! But I will be in Uppsala in the office every day, like anyone else.

I think it’s important that I'm there with the team. Management by getting to know the people is important. I want to get the feeling of the different persons that are there. It's important for me to build relations with them and that each part perceives everyone in the team, as a one.