The Team

Meet our

Aidan Paul
Managing Director

Dolomite Solutions is led by Aidan Paul, Managing Director. Individual projects are staffed by small groups mostly from the former Vtesse Networks, which Aidan founded and of which he was CEO and then Chairman, prior to its sale to Interoute in 2014.

Aidan has over 30 years’ experience in fibre optics and data communications. He started his career after graduating from Bristol University testing and designing nuclear submarine reactor control equipment with GEC. He was taught high reliability design by the MoD, which was subsequently re-used in the Vtesse network designs. He delivered the first avalanche photo diodes to BT Martlesham which led to the first replacement of copper and radio connections in the then BT “junction” network with optical fibre in the early 80’s.
He was seconded to the Ethernet standardisation committee IEEE 802.3 by the UK Government, to report back to the then Eden Committee in 1982 determining the standards for Cable TV licencing. At PA Consulting, he advised the Belgian Government Cabinet Office on the convergence of Cable TV and Telecoms and the technical and regulatory changes needed to allow cable TV operators to compete with the incumbent RTT. This study was also provided to the Dutch Government. It led to the 1990 European deregulation of the telecoms sector. He also worked on a messaging system for S.W.I.F.T. and a redesign of its international network based on X.25.

He joined Robert Fleming in 1986 and worked on cable TV financing and M&A, including the sale of ISTEL to AT&T which marked the US entry to the UK telecoms market. He raised $510m for the Orion satellite project, whose shareholders included British Aerospace, Matra, Nissho Iwai, Telecom Italia, General Dynamics, ComDev and Kingston Communications. Orion was the largest start up of the early 90’s. The first satellite carried the UK Lottery traffic. He also raised the first £27m for the ill-fated Ionica Fixed Wireless Access (“FWA”) operator before it went public. He arranged the initial £20m debt financing for Kingston Communication’s expansion of its fibre network into Leeds and then nationally. His last project at Flemings was advice to the British Rail board on the sale of BRT, which was subsequently acquired by Racal and became Global Crossing’s UK operation, now Lumen.

After leaving Flemings, he worked for what became part of Silicon Valley Bank on M&A for amongst others, 3i on its exits from a number of investments, and the sale of Matra’s GSM handset business obtaining a $200m offer from Sony which did not proceed. The former Matra R&D centre was subsequently acquired by Nokia.

After a chance meeting in the US with his former IEEE colleagues, then at Extreme Networks, Aidan realised it was then possible to build a Layer 2 Ethernet network nationally, and he founded Vtesse Networks with financial support from the late Peter Tarrant formerly of Brocade Networks, and support from the former board members of Robert Fleming. With IBM, Vtesse won the largest contract ever lost by BT for the operation of the Lloyds Bank network with a headline value of £500m. The network connecting 70 Lloyds main sites took 2 years. At that point, Vtesse was the only operator contracting for 99.999% reliability, providing the customer paid for proper diversity.

Vtesse Networks also refurbished a former IBM data centre in Hoddesdon, upgrading it to 6MW and Tier 3 plus standards. The 2012 Olympics IT was run from it by Atos.
Vtesse Networks was sold to Interoute in 2014, principally as a result of the continuing application of business rates to the network, at a substantially higher level than applied to BT, which undermined the Vtesse model.

Aidan also advised two Herald Investment Management Venture funds from 2000 until 2022 when the funds came to end of life. He was a non-executive director on a number of boards, the last being Antenova, a supplier of IoT antennas and RF modules, which was acquired by DiscoverIE plc in 2021.

Dolomite Solutions was founded after the sale of Vtesse Networks to Interoute in 2014.

Regular participants in Dolomite Solutions work are Derek Rodgers and Martin Hodder.

Derek Rodgers

Derek Rodgers has 40 years’ experience of designing and building optical networks, initially at BT. He subsequently worked for a number of independent operators, including Vtesse Networks and more recently CityFibre.

He has worked on the following Dolomite projects: –

  • The design of diverse routes for CloudHQ’s new data centre in Didcot;
  • The investigation and design of the routes from a new submarine cable route across the Bristol Channel to connect the Vantage data centres to the South West submarine cable routes.
  • A quadruple route design for a new data centre in Slough;
  • Surveying of a new route down the “New River” to provide additional connectivity for the new Google data centre in Cheshunt;
  • Feasibility of a new London canal route;
  • Initial work on re-examining tramway duct for fibre.

Martin Hodder

Martin Hodder is a GIS expert and provided support for Vtesse Networks and Its use of the MapInfo GIS system. He runs his own company, Higher Mapping Solutions

Martin has worked on a number of projects for Dolomite including: –

  • The calculation for a major carrier of the additional office space covered by an incremental build per kilometres of network. This involved using several data bases to discount non-office premises from the calculations;
  • Analysis of settlement coverage from a number of historic long distance fibre routes;
  • Mapping of tramway duct from street lists;
  • Development of a model for calculating Fixed Wireless Access coverage for DCMS market coverage.