60 Seconds with Alpha Wireless CEO Fergal Lawlor

Alpha Wireless was founded in 2007 by Fergal Lawlor CEO in Portlaoise, Co. Laois. They design and manufacture high performance, superior quality antenna solutions. Customers include network operators, neutral hosts, OEMs and WISPS. The company has seen exponential growth over the years in line with the growing demand for connectivity – they now serve over 40 customers globally across their main markets Ireland, UK, US, Canada and Australia.

Their ability to customise sets them apart from other vendors, no two sites are the same and flexibility is at the heart of what they do to solve customers’ network challenges. Alpha Wireless have a big advantage of being truly global and been able to provide high quality fit-for-purpose solutions. Fast. They are committed to a 90-day turnaround from concept to product-delivery. 

They put a major focus on aesthetics and concealment is tall priority. While traditional cell deployments have been unattractive and expensive, Alpha Wireless products are affordable and blend in with their surroundings; deployed on either street poles or nestled discreetly on rooftops – well away from the line of site of pedestrians or motorists.

Q: Fergal, what first motivated you to enter the Australian market?

A: I had some experience in the Australian market from when I previously worked there. The NBN fixed wireless network presented Alpha Wireless with opportunities as we are market leaders in 3.5GHz-capable antenna products. In particular we have pioneered pseudo-omni, small cell, panel/beamforming, concealment and tri-sector/canisters in both 2.5 and 3.5 GHz enabling operators to provide targeted, localised coverage and capacity. We have a great partner in Maser Technologies which look after the sales, business development and all the logistics in this market.

Q: What are the cultural challenges & opportunities for Irish businesses in Australia?

A: I find the cultures of Australia and Ireland to be similar, both cultures are dynamic and enterprising. We recently opened an R&D office in Sydney; it was very easy to align the cultures between Ireland and Australia offices. We have global reach with the advantage of having local presence and knowledge in the Australia market.

Q: Looking back at Alpha Wireless’ evolution, what do you think you could done more or less of?

A: Since opening our R&D office in Sydney it is easier to support our local partner and customers. Looking back, I believe its very important that we spend more time in the market supporting our partner on customer visits. It’s important for customers to see that vendors are investing in their market. Our recent investment in local R&D offices is a statement of intent from Alpha Wireless.

Q: Alpha Wireless has experienced impressive international growth, serving 22 global markets. How does Australia compare to other English-speaking markets like the US?

A: We see Australia as an attractive location for doing business and establishing commercial ties. It is a forward-thinking nation one that is at the leading edge of innovation. It is like the US in this way except for the US has the obvious advantage of scale.

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