The Cirus Foundation has named former Apple CEO Gil Amelio as its senior adviser, the company announced Monday.
The blockchain-powered data-ownership project said the veteran technology executive would also serve as chairman of its commercial division, helping Cirus reach an untapped market for its technology.
Cirus’ plug-and-play router gives users control over their data, allowing them to earn cryptocurrency from this information in way that’s similar to Helium’s approach to low-power WiFi systems.
Cirus said in an announcement that it was seeking “a seasoned executive” who understood internet connectivity.
“It signals there is no better time to be in Blockchain,” Cirus co-founder and CEO Daniel Bland said in a statement. “We’re more confident than ever that together we will be taking steps in the right direction in terms of building this Ownership Economy.”
Bland told CoinDesk that Amelio’s “vast global network” could be helpful to Cirus “as we look to expand in various markets,” and that he planned on having weekly calls with him.
Amelio is well-known for guiding Apple during a turbulent time in the late 1990s when it was struggling to generate innovative products and losing money. Amelio cut costs, but also oversaw the iconic computer and mobile device company’s development of the Mac OS 8 operating system before leaving in 1997.
He has remained active in the technology and telecommunications worlds as a venture capitalist and board member at several companies, including an 18-year stint as an AT&T director.
In a statement, Amelio called blockchain “the next mega-trend,” and said that Cirus offered the first opportunity that “nails its mass adoption.”
“I think data ownership is at the core of what the original promise of the internet was,” he said. “It was always about decentralization and empowering the individual.”