MRV seeking alternatives for network equipment business, including optical networking

Almost a year after divesting itself of its optical components business, MRV Communications Inc. (OTC Pink Sheets:MRVC) is potentially looking to do the same with its Network Equipment segment.

Almost a year after divesting itself of its optical components business, MRV Communications Inc. (OTC Pink Sheets:MRVC) is potentially looking to do the same with its Network Equipment segment.

The company filed a Form 8-K with the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) on September 2 stating that its board of directors would begin “exploring strategic alternatives” for the business segment, which includes its Optical Communications Systems division as well as Creative Electronics Systems SA, a Swiss subsidiary that focuses on aerospace and defense.

The optical communications unit includes WDM and transport equipment, including the FiberDriver and LambdaDriver platforms; the OptiSwitch line of Carrier Ethernet access platforms; test automation equipment; and network management and provisioning software.

The company recently launched a new version of the OptiSwitch (see “MRV Communications introduces multi-functional Carrier Ethernet Access Platform”). Additional product rollouts are expected while the board decides what to do with the business unit. MRV has retained separate firms to handle potential transactions involving the optical unit and Creative Electronics Systems. Oppenheimer & Co. Inc. will act as financial advisor in connection with Optical Communications Systems division, and Headwaters BD, LLC will do the same for the Swiss unit. No timetable for completing the review was announced.

A divestiture of the Optical Communications Systems division would be the second optically related sell off the company has made in the past year. The firm sold its Source Photonics component and subsystem business to Francisco Partners, a private equity fund, in October 2010 (see "Source Photonics acquired by Francisco Partners").

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