As Blossom’s CEO, Manrique oversees all aspects of the Blossom System, and is responsible for budget management, legal, sales, and operations (including manufacturing, third party logistics and customer support). He also oversees investor relations and VC engagements. Prior to starting Blossom, Manrique worked at Skype for nine years in various roles. Before leaving Skype as Senior Director of Skype’s Consumer Electronics Group, he was responsible for developing products with hardware partners in the consumer electronics industry. Manrique pioneered the development and launch of Skype’s implementation on HDTVs from all major television manufacturers, Skype’s launch on the Sony PlayStation Vita, and all embedded applications on residential handsets (WiFi, DECT and ATA). Manrique was also responsible for managing the Skype Certified Program for all hardware devices, a large portion of the company’s intellectual property licensing and the Skype Developers Program. Before his tenure at Skype, Manrique was a product line manager for Service Provider products at Cisco-Linksys, overseeing all service provider CPE product offerings. Prior to joining Linksys, he was responsible for leading product management at Cisco Systems for industrial Ethernet, long-reach Ethernet, and ETSI-based DSLAM products. Manrique previously spent a decade in the irrigation industry, taking on multiple roles involving engineering, product development and sales of residential, commercial, and agricultural irrigation equipment. Manrique has authored fourteen patents (with 10 more pending) covering home networking, VoIP, network management, UMA and industrial Ethernet applications. He holds an engineering degree from the University of Costa Rica, and a Master of Science in Engineering and M.B.A. from the University of California at Davis.
Kaido Kert, CTO and founder
As CTO for Blossom, Kaido handles both hardware and software architecting for the company. He has assembled a team of engineers that run Blossom’s backend, firmware development, testing and QE, data integration and analysis. Kaido architected the complete technical solution (device hardware and software, cloud application, front ends) that powers the Blossom System. Prior to starting Blossom, Kaido worked at Skype for nine years, holding various positions, most recently as Principal Software Development Engineer for Skype’s Consumer Electronics Group. In this role, he was responsible for leading the integration of Skype into multiple hardware platforms. Kaido pioneered the engineering, development and implementation for the majority of Skype’s embedded solutions, including Smart TVs from manufacturers including Samsung, Panasonic, LGE, Sony, and Vizio. He also headed up Skype’s client for Sony PlayStation Vita, and all embedded applications on residential handsets.
Kaido’s pioneering work integrating Skype’s stack and A/V engine into embedded platforms was the basis for Skype’s clients in its initial mobile platforms, including Android and Kindle. Kaido worked on multiple large-scale information system projects in Estonia prior to his time at Skype. These projects included developing and implementing multiple aspects of the Estonian electronic identity project, as well as hosting and managing the infrastructure for some of the largest web properties in the Baltics. Kaido began his career in embedded systems and large scale consumer electronics manufacturing while working as a development and applications engineer for an industrial robotics company. There, he built solutions for electronics manufacturing facilities for Nokia, Motorola and others. Kaido holds multiple patents covering gaming, data streaming, device systems optimization, and communications. He has an engineering degree from Tallinn Polytechnic School.