NEC Corp. (www.nec.com), Fujikura Ltd. (www.fujikura.co.jp), and eGtran (www.egtran.com) have announced the formation of a new multisource agreement (MSA) for a compact small-form-factor pluggable (CSFP) transceiver and a compact small-form-factor (CSFF) transceiver to support network systems, especially those deploying single-fiber bidirectional transceivers. The CSFP MSA defines a transceiver mechanical form factor with latching mechanism and a host board, SFP-like electrical edge connector, and cage. The CSFF MSA also defines a transceiver mechanical form-factor. These highly integrated compact transceiver modules will enable network system vendors to increase port density and data throughput while reducing network equipment cost, the MSA signatories believe.

Oki Optical Components (www.okioptical.com), supplier of very high-speed optical and IC components for Ethernet and telecom applications, and Kotura Inc. (www.kotura.com), provider of silicon photonic components, have announced a partnership to bring new products to the market place. Later this year, Oki Optical Components plans to introduce a 10-Gbit/sec avalanche photodiode (APD) receiver with integrated variable optical attenuator (VOA) for metro applications. The silicon photonics VOA, which the company claims has the fastest response time in the industry, enables the receiver to support a wide range of new applications.

Zayo Group (www.zayo.com), a regional provider of bandwidth and telecom services, has closed its acquisition of Citynet Fiber Network (CFN), the wholesale division of integrated communications provider Citynet. Zayo says the deal doubles its metro and regional fiber route-miles to 17,000, serving more than 1,400 on-net building locations in 12 states. Tulsa, OK-based CFN now becomes part of Zayo Bandwidth, Zayo Group's fiber-based bandwidth business unit, which provides private line, wavelength, Ethernet, Internet, collocation, and other services to carriers, web-centric companies, public institutions, and enterprises. The sale affects only the wholesale operations of Citynet.

Blink Communications (www.blink.ca), a facilities-based data-communications carrier, says it has launched a distributed dedicated wavelength service as part of its suite of managed data transport services, using Meriton Networks' (www.meriton.com) 3300 Optical Services Multiplexer. Blink says its wavelength services will allow for dedicated carrier-grade Ethernet up to 10 Gbits/sec, available in point-to-point and multiple point-to-point configurations. The service will augment Blink's existing high-bandwidth capabilities, enabling new data, Internet, voice, and video applications.

Columbus Networks (www.columbus-networks.com) has completed cable installation on the first phase of an undersea fiber-optic express route that connects Colombia with Florida. The company says it expects to light the first of two fiber cable segments and begin offering service in April. The first-phase undersea cable segment links Cartagena, Colombia, and Morant Point, Jamaica. Installation work is continuing on the second phase of the cable that connects Jamaica to Florida in Boca Raton. The principal operator of the ARCOS undersea network, Columbus Networks expects to complete the second leg of the express route in July.

Turin Networks Inc. (www.turinnetworks.com) has successfully completed its acquisition of Carrier Access Corp., provider of wireless backhaul optimization and converged access equipment. The new company offers customers an expanded portfolio that merges Carrier Access' wireless backhaul optimization and converged access products with Turin's portfolio in metro aggregation, switching, and transport of Ethernet services over optical and copper PDH access networks. The acquisition also effectively doubles the size of the company's customer base to more than 600 service providers worldwide.

Corning Inc. (www.corning.com) says that Verizon Communications Inc. (www.verizon.com) has purchased Corning's ClearCurve rugged drop cable for its FiOS FTTP roll-out. Corning's ClearCurve product suite was designed to help overcome the installation challenges in multiple-dwelling units (MDUs) by providing a bend-resistant fiber optimized for the strenuous deployment conditions in apartment buildings and condominium complexes. Verizon qualified the ClearCurve technology for MDU applications following a successful series of field trials, Corning reports.

Gemfire Corp. (www.gemfire.com) has announced the completion of its merger with Covega Corp., provider of indium phosphide and lithium niobate components and modules to the telecommunications, industrial, medical, defense, and test and measurement industries. Covega will become a wholly owned subsidiary and the active component division of Gemfire's Planar Light Circuit product family. Products from the Covega facility include superluminescent light-emitting diodes (SLEDs), Fabry-Perot lasers, tunable laser gain chips, semiconductor optical amplifiers, and lithium niobate modulators.

Reflecting the company's strategy to expand the market for its optical, analog, and mixed-signal and intellectual property (IP) offerings, Gennum Corp. (www.gennum.com) has unveiled a new corporate identity and brand strategy. Gennum designs semiconductors and IP cores for consumer connectivity, enterprise, video broadcast, and data communications products. Designed to better position the company in existing markets and gain recognition in new markets, the new brand is the latest step in a series of activities that the company asserts has resulted in a refined product focus, increased operational efficiency, and a path toward growth.

IPtronics A/S (www.iptronics.com), supplier of silicon for parallel optical applications, has closed more than $10 million in Series B funding. Creandum and Sunstone Capital co-led the investment round. Also contributing to the round was current investor 10IPT10, as well as members of the management team. IPtronics says the funding will be used to accelerate global sales and product development. IPtronics supplies ICs to the emerging market for parallel optical interconnects, a market forecasted to replace electrical high-speed connections in next-generation computer systems and storage networks.

Next-generation pan-European network operator Interoute (www.interoute.com) and Malta's quad-play telecom provider GO (www.go.com.mt) have signed an agreement to deploy a second submarine cable, linking Malta to Italy and the rest of the continent through Interoute's pan-European network. The project, known as "GO 1 Mediterranean Cable System," will be completed this autumn and will increase diversity, resiliency, and international broadband connectivity to meet Malta's expanding telecommunications needs.

Bookham Inc. (www.bookham.com) has shipped its 500,000th 980-nm pump laser module to the telecommunications industry. The 980-nm pump laser was recently shipped to Huawei Technologies Co. Ltd, which recognized Bookham as a "Global Core Partner" optical components vendor in 2007, for continued reliability and flexible supply of products, including the 980-nm pump laser, 10-Gbit/sec co-packaged laser modulators, receivers, directly modulated lasers, and integrated tunable laser assemblies, all of which are assembled in the Bookham facility in Shenzhen. Bookham says it was first to market with this technology in 1995 with an industry leading 100-mW laser module, built on 10 years of technology research and design originating from IBM Research Labs.

Level 3 Communications' (www.level3.com) European Markets Group has been selected by Spill Group, one of the world's leading generators of online gaming traffic, to provide the company's underlying network infrastructure and content delivery services in Europe and North America. These services enable Spill Group to meet the demands of the fast growing global online gaming community. Per the multiyear agreement, Level 3 says it will provide Spill Group with high-speed Internet access and colocation services to manage increased gaming traffic. Additionally, Spill Group will utilize Level 3's content delivery services to provide its global audience with a rich gaming experience. With a portfolio of 2,000 online games available, Spill Group's portals receive an average of 60 million unique visitors per month, say company representatives.

Prysmian Cables & Systems (www.prysmian.com) has announced a major contract for the supply of telecommunication cables to Libya. Prysmian says the contract, inked with Libyan General Post and Telecommunications Co. (GPTC), will involve the deployment of a range of cable types into the network of the national carrier. The deal has an overall value of more than €35 million and includes cable for both underground and aerial deployment in various configurations based upon GPTC specifications. Deliveries were scheduled to begin in February and continue for approximately 12 months.

Optical fiber network provider Geo (www.geo-uk.net) has been sold by the Hutchison Whampoa Group to the Alchemy Investment Plan in a deal worth £62 million. Geo owns a 2,500-km optical fiber network across the U.K., which is adjacent to the main gas pipeline. It also owns an 80-km fiber network built deep underground in Thames Water's sewer network in London. The company says it uses these assets to design and build bespoke data networks for some of the U.K.'s largest organizations, including Carphone Warehouse, Tiscali, and 3UK. It had recently been selected by the Welsh Assembly Government to build and operate the new FibreSpeed network to deliver high-speed communication services in North Wales, the first phase of which will see a £30 million investment over the next 15 years.

Foundry Networks (www.foundrynet.com) reports that its NetIron MLX metro routers have been deployed by Telstra Europe (www.telstra.co.uk), the European arm of global B2B communications services provider Telstra International, across its U.K. IP network. Telstra Europe provides a portfolio of data, voice, managed network, and hosting services to more than 8,000 enterprise customers. Working with Foundry reseller Matrix Communications, NetIron MLX metro routers have been installed throughout Telstra Europe's U.K. network points of presence (POPs). Foundry's FastIron SX Layer 2/3 switches have also been purchased for use in Telstra Europe's hosting centers for network management.

PacketFront (www.packetfront.com) has concluded an agreement with OpenNet (www.opennet.se) on upgrading the city networks in Orebro and Kumla, Sweden. OpenNet carries the services of other service providers in open networks. In just two weeks, 13,500 households have moved to a new technical platform, which provides greater freedom of choice and higher capacity, say PacketFront representatives. The company claims its management systems — i.e., the control and provisioning system BECS and the access routers' software iBOS — have made this rapid upgrade possible. BECS makes it possible for operators to build and run fully automated broadband networks with self-provisioning functionality "on demand," says PacketFront.

Alcatel-Lucent (www.alcatel-lucent.com) has signed a turnkey contract with a consortium composed of nine operators to deploy a new submarine cable network linking Mumbai in India to Marseilles in France, over approximately 13,000 km. Named India-Middle East-Western Europe (IMEWE), this new submarine cable network will be designed to meet the need for enhanced backhaul communications capabilities along the India—Western Europe route, as well as for increased capacity to support high-bandwidth broadband services. The nine consortium members include Bharti, Etisalat, France Telecom, Ogero Telecom, PTCL, STC, Telecom Egypt, Telecom Italia Sparkle, and VSNL. Alcatel-Lucent will provide its 1620 Light Manager DWDM submarine platform as well as cables, repeaters, and branching units, and its optical crossconnect system for the landing stations. Completion is scheduled for the last quarter of 2009.

Ericsson (www.ericsson.com) has announced a two-phase turnkey contract to deploy microwave and optical transmission equipment for M1 (www.m1.com.sg), one of Singapore's leading mobile communications providers. Per the agreement, Ericsson is to supply, implement, and maintain full turnkey microwave and optical transmission equipment that allows optimization on both network and sites, acting as the backhaul of M1's wireless broadband and cellular traffic. The transmission portfolio, including Ericsson's Optical MultiService Metro-Edge (OMS) platform and the ServiceOn management system, is expected to roll out in the early part of 2008 and will involve several hundred sites across Singapore. The two-phased project will focus on expanding the capacity of these sites and fully utilizing backhaul speeds, thereby improving performance of M1's transmission network, say Ericsson representatives.

GPON provider iamba Networks (www.iamba.com) has announced distribution agreements with Eastele Technology Ltd. (www.eastele.com.hk) in China; I&C Microsystems Co. Ltd. (www.incmicro.com) in Korea; and Jeritronics Ltd. (www.jeritronics.com) in Taiwan. Last year, iamba Networks introduced its GPON Eco-System – iGES – which it claims is a complete GPON, enabling telecom equipment manufacturers and original design manufacturers to quickly deliver GPON systems. John Mein, vice president of sales for iamba, says that the company considers Asia one of largest opportunities for GPON deployment.

Media Broadcast GmbH (formerly Deutsche Telekom's Media & Broadcast Unit before it was sold to French company TDF) has selected Corrigent Systems' (www.corrigent.com) CM-100 and CM-4000 products for a network to be built by Deutsche Telekom's wholesale business unit and leased to a leading German cable operator. In light of the contract, Corrigent may make a play for the cable MSO market going forward, says Gady Rosenfeld, vice president of marketing.

Enablence Technologies Inc. (www.enablence.com) has extended its vertical integration strategy and its product portfolio, thanks to the closing of its acquisition of ANDevices Inc. (www.andevices.com), which supplies products such as tunable optical dispersion compensators and arrayed waveguide gratings (AWGs) for ROADMs based on planar lightwave circuit technology. These products, as well as the company's splitter, triplexer, and filter offerings, complement Enablence's existing FTTH transceiver products, according to Enablence CEO Arvind Chhatbar, and extend the company's addressable market to new application areas faster than the company would have achieved on its own. Chhatbar says that his company will leverage its Dispersion Bridge PLC technology and ANDevices' packaging expertise in new-generation metro and long-haul products that could include an optical channel monitor.

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