June 29, 2004 Boston--FiberGrade Inc., a developer of optical transmission monitoring technologies, officially "graduated" from The Photonic Center at Boston University's Business Acceleration Program and was acquired by PXIT, a manufacturer of high performance optical and electrical test equipment. PXIT, based in Lexington, MA, was formed through the merger of Tsunami Photonics Ltd and PX Instrument Technology in May 2003.
The company acquired FiberGrade in order to add to its product portfolio as well as bring on board the start-up's knowledge and expertise in the transmission testing industry. The acquisition was originally funded by 4th Level Ventures and Delta Partners.
FiberGrade was founded in 2002 by company President and Chief Technology Officer Fadi Daou, and incubated out of the Photonics Center at Boston University. The company designed and developed a number of electro-optical component test analyzers in one of the Photonic Center's 17 product development laboratories. FiberGrade's Vector Sampling signal analyzers, now part of PXIT's product portfolio, are cost-effective signal integrity testing solutions for broadband electro-optical signals.
"The Photonics Center at Boston University played a critical role in FiberGrade's success," said Fadi Daou."The use of a pre-existing, ready-to-use, test and measurement lab super-accelerated our product development process, and a number of the Photonics Center's partnerships pushed along FiberGrade's overall development at an astounding pace."
The Photonics Center at Boston University identifies and develops technologies based on the practical application of light. Through a jointly managed program with Beacon Photonics, the Photonics Center hosts a Business Accelerator with the mission of enabling emerging photonics technology companies to grow from idea to commercialization with greater speed and success. The Center provides an entrepreneurial environment that includes 20 laboratories, workspace for up to 20 start-up companies, and access to a range of equipment worth in excess of $40 million. To date the Center has started and/or accelerated 17 companies that have raised a combined total of nearly $200 million in outside venture capital and seed financing.
"The Photonics Center's mission is to accelerate the development of light-enabled technology companies by providing them the resources to shorten their product development time and launch them into the market," said Dr. Donald Fraser, director of the Photonics Center at Boston University. "FiberGrade is a perfect example of how this process works. While at The Photonics Center, FiberGrade was able to develop and produce a number of marketable products without having to first build out their product development lab."