Milind Tamhane, Commercial Director, Optical Fibre, Corning India

Milind Tamhane is a veteran in the field of fibre optics with over two and a half de­cades of experience across pro­duct development, manufacturing, commercial sales and marketing. He started his career as a product design and manufacturing engineer with Optel Telecommunications in 1987. Earlier, he worked with Himachal Futuristic Commu­ni­­cations Limited as plant ope­rations head, with Digi­­­Link India as vice-president of sales and product development, and with Schneider Electric as vice-president of manufacturing and product development.

Tamhane joined Corning in 2013 and has been instrumental in setting up its fibre-to-the-home business. He is currently a member of the com­­pany’s India leadership team and heads the commercial function for its optical fibre business in India. His focus is on building a cohesive unit of sales, product line management, market de­ve­­­lopment, applications engineering and customer service functions.

When asked about his outlook for the Indian optical fibre industry, Tamhane ­reiterates his belief in data growth. He says, “As innovation and, more importantly, availability of smart devices grow multifold, bandwidth demand will increase, making it imperative for both state-owned and private carrier ­networks to focus on stren­g­thening the fibre networks in the country. Network owners have realised the im­portance of future proo­fing infrastructure and are deploying high fibre count cables with the right specifications. The ­challenge is to keep pace with the explosion in bandwidth demand.”

Tamhane feels that every assignment offers an opportunity to learn more about op­tics. He fondly recalls the time when his team developed an end-to-end solution for a tactical fibre link for the Indian Army, which was extremely challenging to design and manufacture.

Tamhane believes in leading by example, letting his team own their actions and learn from their mistakes. A graduate in mechanical engineering from the G.S. Institute of Tech­no­logy and Science, Indore, Ta­m­­­hane also holds a master’s degree in product design from IIT Bom­bay and a postgraduate diploma in industrial management.

Tamhane likes to spend his spare time with his family. His wife, a postgraduate in digital communications, has been in the academics for over 25 years, and their daughter is pursuing her medical de­gree in Goa. He enjoys wild­life photography and calls himself an amateur ornithologist.