AXT Holdings, Inc. was formed in early 2003 as a holding company for launching opportunistic technology ventures identified, researched and developed under the direction of the company’s principals. AXT provides management, capital, and technology resources to its majority owned companies, although its objective is to recruit and develop a dedicated management team. AXT’s companies typically use a rapid prototyping approach whereby at least one customer is driving the product specification and requirements.

The company and its subsidiaries operated from a central facility in Tempe, Arizona. Company operations have been funded initially by capital contributions from its founders while continued growth is sustained from cash from operations.

Principals and Officers

Rick Buonincontri
founder, President & CEO

As President and CEO of AXT Holdings, Rick is responsible for the company’s overall corporate direction and performance. Rick has held several management positions in early stage technology companies including corporate finance, business and corporate development, and operations. In 1999, he co-founded a genre specific media company in one of the earliest efforts to distribute video and audio content to targeted audiences via the Internet. Under his leadership, the company successfully released the first ever book by a New York Times bestselling author as an eBook, or electronic format.
Prior to his career in start up ventures, Rick started and managed the NASDAQ trading desk for one of Arizona’s largest retail brokerage firms. As the head trader of NASDAQ market making, he closely covered Arizona technology companies. In 2001, Rick founded The Aviary Group, and along with Mark Thompson provided due diligence and services to investors with technology related private equity portfolio holdings. Since 2003, Rick has managed all high-level transactions on behalf of AXT Holdings Inc, the parent company of Solid State Networks.
Rick holds an MS in Economics from Arizona State University and a BS in Economics from Florida Atlantic University.

Mark Thompson
founder, CTO & Chief Software Architect

Mark has been in commercial software development for more than 15 years, having worked on numerous commercially released and successful software projects. In the video game space he has worked as a first party licensee for both Sega and 3DO, and a third party licensee for Sony. He has worked as a contractor for developers such as Spectrum Holobyte, Blizzard North, Epic Megagames, and Panasonic.

Prior to joining The Aviary Group in 2002, Mark was the former Chief Software Architect for Aerocast, a joint venture between Liberty Media and General Instrument. Aerocast was a technology company focused on video distribution over the Internet to the cable set top box. After Motorola’s acquisition of GI in 2001, Motorola acquired Liberty Media’s interest and absorbed the company. As Chief Software Architect, Mark has been included on over 30 patent applications for technology related to large file distribution and video streaming over the Internet.

Mark is well known in the US and Europe as the developer of, an award winning site that distributes the many software utilities that he has written. AnalogX is known as a trusted brand in software utilities, guaranteed to be lightweight, high performance, and free of malicious code. Some of Mark's utilities have also been used by Microsoft (as XP PowerToys) as well as PC Magazine.

Mark has a BS in Computer Science from the University of California, Berkeley

Chris Jensen
founder, VP of Strategic Development

Chris has been involved in private equity and real estate development for the past 5 years. His extensive business network has provided The Aviary Group the ability to participate in a variety of transactions, including real estate acquisitions and venture capital level investments. His network provides AXT’s portfolio companies to access decision makers and key personnel of target partners and customers.

Chris has a BA in Marketing from the University of Nebraska



At AXT we believe that opportunities are abundant if you know where to look. Capitalizing on those opportunities is another requires vision, courage, talent and absolute determination.

Our goal at AXT is to spot opportunities created by technological change, and to capitalize on them by moving swiftly, smartly and with an entreprenuer's passion.