BEIJING, Oct. 25, 2012 /PRNewswire/ -- UTStarcom Holdings Corp. ("UTStarcom" or the "Company") (NASDAQ: UTSI) a leading provider of broadband equipment and solutions, today announced the appointment of Mr. Sean Shao as an independent director to UTStarcom's Board of Directors, effective October 25, 2012. With Mr. Shao's appointment, UTStarcom's Board of Directors will consist of seven directors, including five independent directors. Mr. Shao will serve on the Company's Audit Committee, increasing the number of members to three, and will replace Mr. Robert Pu as Chairman of the Audit Committee. This is a position vacated by Mr. Pu when he assumed the role of UTStarcom's Chief Financial Officer on October 12, 2012. Mr. Shao will also serve on the Company's Nominating and Corporate Governance and Compensation Committees. Mr. Shao is a highly qualified and experienced financial executive, having served as an independent director as well as the chief financial officer of several US-listed companies. With respect to his director experience, he currently serves on the boards of Xueda Education Group, AsiaInfo-Linkage, and Agria Corporation, among others. He holds important leadership positions, including Chairman of the Audit Committee and Chairman of the Compensation Committee. With respect to his executive experience, from 2006 to 2008 Mr. Shao was the Chief Financial Officer of Trina Solar Limited. He was the Chief Financial Officer of China Edu Corporation from 2005 to 2006 and the Chief Financial Officer of Watchdata Technologies Ltd from 2004 to 2005. Earlier in his career, Mr. Shao worked at Deloitte Touche Tohmatsu CPA Ltd. for approximately a decade. Mr. Shao received a master's degree in health care administration from the University of California at Los Angeles and a bachelor's degree in art from East China Normal University. He is currently a member of the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants. "We are very pleased to welcome Mr. Shao to the Board," said Xiaoping Li, Chairman of UTStarcom's Board of Directors. "Having served as a chief financial officer and an independent director of several US-listed companies, Mr. Shao has extremely relevant and valuable experience in accounting, corporate finance, and mergers and acquisitions. He is therefore perfectly suited to assume the role of Chairman of the Audit Committee and we believe he will make significant contributions to bolstering our financial controls and governance as we continue to move through our ongoing strategic transition."