Quantum Bridge Communications Inc. (North Andover, MA), a developer of optical-access networking solutions, completed its third round of investment financing. Texas Pacific Group (Fort Worth, TX) led the $102-million round. This brings the company's total funding to more than $124 million since incorporation in October 1998. The funding will enable Quantum Bridge to expand the organization, including customer support, sales, and development.
Alcoa Fujikura Ltd. (AFL-Brentwood, TN) and the Cookson Group announced that AFL will acquire Cookson's Focal Ltd. (Alpharetta, GA) and Focas Inc. (Swindon, UK). Terms of the acquisition were not disclosed. Focas manufactures fiber-optic cables for aerial applications. AFL plans to use the Alparetta facility to extend its North American and Latin American production, while the Swindon plant will provide the company's first offshore manufacturing facility to serve Europe, Africa, and parts of Asia.
Ciena Corp. (Linthicum, MD) and Juniper Networks Inc. (Mountain View, CA) announced successful completion of interoperability testing between OC-192c/STM-64 (10-Gbit/sec) optical and Internet-protocol (IP) platforms. Direct connectivity between Ciena's MultiWave CoreStream intelligent optical-transport system and Juniper's M160 core router can make 10-Gbit/sec IP services over glass a reality for service providers like iaxis, a pan-European network operator using Ciena and Juniper systems at its network core, say the system vendors.
Lucent Technologies (Murray Hill, NJ) signed a two-year preferred-supplier agreement with Global Crossing Ltd. (Hamilton, Bermuda) to supply optical networking equipment for Global Crossing's network that will connect more than 200 cities on five continents. As part of the agreement, Global Crossing will be the first carrier to deploy Lucent's WaveStar LambdaRouter to route up to 256 individual signals and scale to handle 1,042 signals. Global Crossing will also be first to test Lucent's WaveStar OLS 800G, a 320-channel DWDM system.
Williams Communications (Tulsa, OK) completed a $115-million transaction to provide fiber, collocation, and network-maintenance services on its nationwide fiber-optic network to CTC Communications Group Inc. (Waltham, MA). Under the terms of the agreement, Williams will provide CTC with an indefeasible right-of-use (IRU) for 8,300 route-mi of dark fiber. Additionally, Williams receives recurring monthly revenues from CTC for collocation and ongoing network-maintenance services. The fiber will expand CTC's current Washington, DC-to-Boston corridor into major markets extending from the central United States throughout the eastern United States.
CyOptics Inc. (Los Angeles), an opto-electronic components manufacturer, completed its first round of financing. Funding of $16.3 million was provided by Soros Private Equity Partners LLC and the Sprout Group, as well as the company's seed investors. The funds will be used for product development and marketing and to expand the company's manufacturing infrastructure. CyOptics was founded in early 1999.
Applied Micro Circuits Corp. (AMCC-San Diego) signed a definitive agreement to acquire YuniNetworks Inc. (San Diego), a privately held fabless semiconductor company specializing in scalable terabit switch-fabric technology. Under the agreement, AMCC will issue up to 2.25 million shares of its common stock and options in exchange for all outstanding shares of YuniNetworks' preferred and common stock. The transaction is valued at approximately $241 million.
Sycamore Networks (Chelmsford, MA) announced that Global NAPs Inc. (Quincy, MA), a national competitive local-exchange carrier (CLEC), will deploy Sycamore's SN 8000 network nodes and SILVX optical-network management system in its Internet backbone bandwidth services. The SN 8000 can be deployed into the metropolitan core, regional, or long-haul networks. Global NAPs offers services to customers from New England to Florida and plans to expand into California, Washington, Georgia, Nevada, and Illinois by the end of 2000.
Knology Inc. (West Point, GA), an interactive broadband provider, selected Riverstone Networks Inc. (Santa Clara, CA) to provide next-generation switch routers for Knology's high-speed broadband network. By standardizing its network-edge infrastructure on Riverstone's RS 8600 solution, Knology plans to replace existing multiple box solutions with a single platform. The RS 8000 family provides integrated LAN and WAN functionality for hosting, data centers, and Internet points-of-presence (POPs). Riverstone is a Cabletron Systems (Rochester, NH) company.
Viatel Inc. (New York City) signed an agreement with Level 3 Communications Inc. (Omaha, NE) to acquire a 25% ownership interest, valued at over $150 million, in the transatlantic fiber-optic cable system now under construction by Level 3. Under the agreement, Viatel and Level 3 will each own and operate fibers on the undersea cable. The 1.28-Tbit cable connecting the United States and Europe is expected to be in commercial operation by this fall. Global Crossing Ltd. (Hamilton, Bermuda) is also participating in the transatlantic cable system.
Advent International (Menlo Park, CA), a large private equity firm, made an investment in C Speed Corp. (Santa Clara, CA), a developer of all-optical-network switching solutions. The financing will be used for product and business development. C Speed's products will use micro-electromechanical systems micro-mirror technology to create switches capable of addressing multiple positions.
Entridia Corp. (Irvine, CA), a manufacturer of silicon-based routing engines for converged IP networks, announced completion of the first segment of a two-stage round of funding. The $15 million, provided by Applied Micro Circuits Corp. (San Diego), brings the total equity of investment in Entridia to $30 million. The second segment of this third round of financing will follow soon.
The company recently unveiled OPERA (Optical Edge Routing Architecture), a family of optical IP line aggregation products targeted at the metropolitan area network (MAN) and service-provider backbone networks.
Vitesse Semiconductor Corp. (Camarillo, CA) acquired all the equity interests of Sitera Inc. (Longmont, CO) for $750 million in common stock. Sitera, founded in November 1996, provides intelligent network processing for service-provider, carrier edge, and large enterprise markets. The acquisition will extend Vitesse's capabilities and provide more flexibility for the company's current products. Vitesse also announced the establishment of a venture fund intended to support the growth of pre-IPO communications companies that are developing cutting-edge components and systems. The fund will selectively take minority positions in companies that are developing communication-related system and component products.
Harmonic Inc. (Sunnyvale, CA) and Charter Communications Inc. (St. Louis) announced that Charter will deploy a range of Harmonic's advanced optical-networking solutions. Charter intends to upgrade 135,000 mi of its cable plant over the next three years. As part of the upgrade, Charter will deploy Harmonic's 1,310-nm PWRLink II transmitters and PWRBlazer II optical nodes, many of which include Harmonic's new digital DWDM return transmitter.
Tyco Electronics Corp. (Harrisburg, PA) reached an agreement to acquire Laser Diode Inc. (Edison, NJ) for Tyco's fiber-optic division. The combined product offerings are expected to enable Tyco to offer a complete package of active and passive products to the DWDM market. Laser Diode was founded in 1967 and produces advanced optoelectronic products for telecommunications, industrial, medical, and military applications.
Riverstone Networks (Santa Clara, CA) announced the rollout of a nationwide network for Lightning Internet Services. Lightning LLC (Mineola, NY), recently acquired by international service provider Gigabell AF (Frankfurt), has integrated and expanded its international network backbone as a hybrid ATM/clear-channel core built on Riverstone's platform. The backbone supports service levels between OC-3 (155 Mbits/sec) and OC-48 (2.5 Gbits/sec) at major network access points and metropolitan areas.
Metro-OptiX (Santa Clara, CA) announced the formation of the company and the successful completion of its first round of venture-capital financing. The company raised $20 million while securing $8 million in equipment financing. Metro-OptiX intends to attack the metropolitan edge-access market with its hybrid bandwidth manager, currently undergoing field trials. The company is an Ericsson (Stockholm) spinoff in which Ericsson has retained a minority interest.
Telseon Inc. (Palo Alto, CA), a provider of metropolitan Internet infrastructure services announced commercial availability of its managed gigabit services running over optical networks. Telseon supplies service providers and their enterprise customers with secure, high-speed, scalable connectivity. The service is typically used to link multiple hosting sites, enterprises, application service providers, and Internet service providers (ISPs) within a metropolitan area. Telseon also secured $80 million in second-round funding from a group of investors.
Luminous Networks (Cupertino, CA), a provider of carrier-class gigabit IP-over-fiber optical-access switches, announced an original equipment manufacturing (OEM) partnership with Scientific-Atlanta Inc. (Atlanta). Scientific-Atlanta will integrate its video technology into Luminous's family of products, enabling both companies to offer bundled video, voice, and data services to service providers. Scientific-Atlanta also made a $10-million equity investment in Luminous. Luminous also received $60 million in third-round financing, led by Morgan Stanley Dean Witter Venture Partners.
Yipes Communications Inc. (San Francisco), a provider of scalable bandwidth for business applications, announced it is providing high-speed Internet access for InternetInventions.com Inc. (Palo Alto, CA), an incubator of startup Internet companies. Yipes uses Ethernet interface over regional gigabit networks, enabling customers to select LAN-to-LAN service between business locations or high-speed Internet access.
Global Crossing Ltd. (Hamilton, Bermuda) announced that its carrier services division is offering wholesale customers optical wavelengths at OC-48 speeds. Optical wavelength service is a fiber-optic, transponder-based, point-to-point solution that provides unprotected bandwidth tailored specifically for data, provisioned using DWDM. Optical wavelengths give carriers an alternative to purchasing dark fiber or traditional private line, allowing them to offer their customers fully managed IP, SONET, and ATM services.
Corning Inc. (Corning, NY) agreed to acquire the remaining equity in NZ Applied Technologies Corp. (NZAT-Woburn, MA) for up to $150 million in Corning common stock. A significant portion of the purchase price is contingent upon NZAT achieving certain product development milestones following completion of the transaction. Corning had assumed a 20% equity ownership position in the company in 1999.
TranSwitch Corp. (Shelton, CT), a developer of high-speed VLSI solutions for communications applications, entered into a strategic technology partnership and OEM agreement with the newly formed OptiX Networks (Boston), which specializes in designing, developing, and marketing VLSI solutions serving the broadband optical-backbone market. The first OptiX chipset is targeted to support both DWDM transport and optical switching.
The Telecommunications Industry Association's (TIA-Arlington, VA) TR- 42 committee completed revisions to the section of ANSI/TIA/EIA-568 that covers optical-fiber technology, following two years of intense debate and development. During the revision process, the standard was divided into three sections. The 568B.3 document was completed in March and is being release in advance of 568B.1, containing general requirements, and 568B.2 on balanced copper cabling. The document is available from Global Engineering Documents by calling (800) 854-7179 (U.S. and Canada), (303) 397-7956 (outside the U.S.), or at http://global.his.com. The TIA also published a new standard, FOTP-180, "Measurement of the Optical Transfer Coefficients of a Passive Branching Device (Coupler)," TIA/EIA-455-180A. The document is a revision of TIA/EIA-455-180. FOTP-180 measures pertinent coefficients of the logarithmic transfer matrix of a branching device to determine the ability of the device to carry out its design function.
HighWave Optical Technologies (Lannion, France) announced the acquisition of France Telecom's (Paris) research laboratory on silica-on-silicon integrated and hybrid-planar technologies and plans to launch a range of products in 2001. With about 20 patents purchased from France Telecom, HighWave is attempting to develop an industrial activity based on the silica-on-silicon integrated planar-optical technology. The company also increased its capital by 68 million francs. With the new capital, the company plans to strengthen its research and development division, increase its production capacity to develop international commercial relations, and respond to market needs.
Through a 2,000-km network expansion, iaxis (New York City) is extending its broadband network into Scandinavia, offering Scandinavian ISPs, application service providers (ASPs), and communications companies access to its 90,000-km global network. The company plans to open net centers in Denmark, Stockholm, and Oslo. In another announcement, iaxis launched the first phase of its new 5-Gbit/sec broadband Internet backbone for ISPs. The first phase includes New York, Paris, Frankfurt, London, Amsterdam, and Brussels among its PoPs. Further, 13 more European cities are expected on the backbone before the end of the year.
Cisco Systems Inc. (San Jose) will acquire privately held Qeyton Systems (Stockholm), a developer of metropolitan DWDM technology. Under terms of the agreement, Cisco common stock, with an aggregated value of approximately $800 million, will be exchanged for all outstanding share of Qeyton. Cisco believes the acquisition will expand the company's optical-networking capabilities and enable it to provide a comprehensive end-to-end optical-networking solution for service providers' metropolitan networks.
Teleglobe (Reston, VA) is expanding its GlobeSystem Europe network five-fold with the purchase of 13,000 route-km of dark fiber from KPNQwest (Amsterdam). Through a $100-million agreement, Teleglobe will add five ring networks to its two existing European rings to provide high-speed connectivity to 40 key European cities. Teleglobe is aggressively building a pan-European footprint to extend its global network deployment through investments in additional fiber and capacity.
Tele1 Europe (Stockholm) inked a contract with Dynarc (Kista, Sweden) to deploy Dynarc's optical-networking equipment in MANs across the Nordic region. Tele1 Europe agreed to purchase $4 million in Dynarc products over the next two years. The contract includes the full range of Dynarc optical router switches and network-management system. The first 15 router switches have already been installed in Stockholm.
KPNQwest (Amsterdam) announced that in field trials conducted with Alcatel (Paris), the world speed record for Internet communications was smashed. The field trial succeeded in delivering the industry's first multiple-channel 40-Gbit/sec field trial carrying the first clear 10-Gbit/sec IP wavelength service. Using Alcatel's multiterabit optical-transport platform, the Optinex 1640, and Juniper Networks' (Mountain View, CA) M160 Internet Backbone Router, technicians were able to combine multiple wavelengths, each at a record line speed of 40 Gbits/sec, and transmit them between the German cities of Frankfurt and Gernsheim, a round trip of about 160 km. In addition, the European record for clear IP data transmission was quadrupled.
Telia (Stockholm) signed an agreement with Lucent Technologies (Murray Hill, NJ) to supply technology for Telia's new optical networks in Europe and the United States. The total value of the three-year contract is expected to be more than $200 million. Telia's Viking network will use Lucent's DWDM technology to provide high-speed telephone, Internet, and data-transmission services to Scandinavia, Europe, and the United States. Deployment of the network is planned to begin in third quarter 2000.
ADC Telecommunications Inc. (Minneapolis) agreed to acquire Altitun (Kista, Sweden), a developer and supplier of active optical components for next-generation optical networks. Under the contract terms, ADC will issue approximately 15.227 million shares of its common stock to Altitun's shareholders and optionholders. The acquisition is valued at approximately $872 million. ADC plans to leverage strategic advantages in building all-optical-network equipment through the use of Altitun's tunable-laser technology.
Lucent Technologies (Murray Hill, NJ) was selected by Telesp Cellular (Campinas, Brazil), Brazil's largest wireless operator, to provide a centrally managed optical network based on Lucent's SDH technology. The new network will allow Telesp Cellular to expand its traffic capacity with higher speeds to enable the transmission of voice, data, and video to facilitate third-generation services. The project consists of implementing five optical rings to connect all of the operator's mobile switching centers, forming an optical backbone in Sao Paulo. The backbone will, in turn, be connected to the coast, the Vale do Paraiba and Campinas. Network installation is planned for completion by September.
Three telecommunications companies from different continents announced the creation of Southern Cone Communications Company S.A., a new 4,300-km broadband fiber-optic network linking Argentina and Chile. Investing in the $220-million joint venture are National Grid Group (London), a U.K.-based electric and telecommunications utility, Chilean carrier Telefonica Manquehue (Santiago, Chile), and Williams Communications Inc. (Tulsa, OK), a U.S.-based global service provider. Williams is investing $24.5 million for a 19.9% stake in Southern Cone; National Grid is investing $61 million and will own 50%; and Telefonica Manquehue's $37 million will net the company a 30.1% stake. National Grid is also investing $80 million in Telefonica Manquehue for a 30% interest in the Chilean carrier. Williams already owns 16.4% of Manquehue.
GlobalNetwork Technology Services (Rochester, NH), a consulting firm focused on delivering networking infrastructures, announced the acquisition of the Brazilian firm Tie-Line Consultores Associados LTDA. Founded in 1989, Tie-Line is a network consulting and outsourcing firm that provides solutions in enterprise systems management.
As part of its GlobeSystem network expansion plan, Teleglobe (Reston, VA) signed a formal construction and maintenance agreement with several telecommunications companies to build a self-healing, high-bandwidth, fiber-optic cable system in the Asia Pacific region. The company is initially committing $40 million to the Asia Pacific Cable Network 2 (APCN-2) cable system. Teleglobe has invested in more than 20 Asia Pacific undersea cables, and APCN-2 will be directly connected to its GlobeSystem broadband network. The 18,000-km APCN-2 cable system, planned for completion in September 2001, will connect Japan, Korea, China, Taiwan, Hong Kong, Philippines, Malaysia, and Singapore. Australian carrier Telstra (Sydney), and U.S. carrier Williams Communications Inc. (Tulsa, OK) have also invested in the APCN-2 cable.
Samsung Electronics (Seoul, Korea) placed orders worth $2 million with Newport Corp. (Irvine, CA) for Newport's automated laser welding and test and measurement systems for producing fiber-optic communications components. The products will be delivered during the third quarter of this year.
The Industrial Technology Research Institute (Taipei, Taiwan), a government-backed research and development laboratory, announced that 14 Taiwanese networking manufacturers, representing approximately 25% of the world's production of workstation and desktop LAN hardware, have formed an open consortium to lead the world's adoption of fiber-optic LANs. The consortium, behind a common standard, will begin transitioning the networking industry toward fiber-based networking products, which are expected to enable a new generation of bandwidth-intensive business and entertainment applications. The group expects to drive market demand by lowering the cost of fiber LANs as much as 50%. The group has already selected 3M's (Austin, TX) VF-45 fiber technology for its initiatives.
Carnegie-Mellon University (Pittsburgh) and the Indian government have teamed up to form a joint-venture company to build a national high-speed data-communications network among top Indian universities and research institutes. The project, known as Sankhya Vahini, meaning "river of knowledge," would link top institutions like the Indian Institutes of Technology, Indian Institute of Science, and other scientific and research organizations. IUNet India, an Indian subsidiary of Carnegie-Mellon's commercial venture, IUNet, was formed by the school and its Indian backers. IUNet India owns 49% of the venture and the Indian partners hold the remaining 51%. The $225-million project will construct a 10,000-mi national backbone operating at 2.5 Gbits/sec with plans to increase to 40 Gbits/sec in five years.
China's Huawei Technologies is looking to invest in the Thai market as part of its global promotion strategy. Huawei is one of many multinational information-technology (IT) companies flocking to Thailand, a country enjoying a boom in IT services. Huawei has set up a representative office in Bangkok, the second place in Southeast Asia, following Singapore, where Huawei has established a presence. Huawei, aiming to secure a foothold in Thailand, has entered a bid to provide the nation's SDH high-speed telecommunications backbone with the telephone organization of Thailand.
The Southern Cross Cable Network, a 29,000-km submarine fiber-optic cable, landed in Nedonna Beach, OR, linking the United States with Australia and New Zealand as well as Fiji and Hawaii. The Nedonna landing begins the laying of the final section of Southern Cross, planned for service in mid-November. The cable is 50% owned by Telecom New Zealand, 40% by Cable & Wireless Optus, and 10% by MCI WorldCom. Williams Cmmunications Inc. (Tulsa, OK) announced it has purchased, in conjunction with an agreement with Australia's PowerTel, significant capacity on Southern Cross.
Photonic Technologies (Sydney, Australia), an optical-component developer, was acquired by Nortel Networks (Brampton, ON) for up to $35.5 million in cash. Nortel already owned approximately one-third of the privately held company. Photonic Technologies' key component technology is expected to further strengthen Nortel's position in delivering a high-performance all-optical Internet. Photonic Technologies will become part of Nortel's high-performance optical-component solutions unit, recently formed to bring together all the company's businesses serving optical-systems producers with strategic optoelectronic and micro-electronic components.