& cplSiteName &

2012 Leading Lights Finalists: Company of the Year (Private)

Michelle Donegan
Wireless Bits
Michelle Donegan
11/1/2012
50%
50%

5:00 AM -- As the Leading Lights Awards ceremony approaches, it's time to review the finalists for Company of the Year (Private).

Admitedly, it wasn't easy to narrow down this shortlist because there were many good candidates. But our finalists of innovative, growing private firms are some of the companies challenging established vendors, and this list highlights some key industry trends, such as software-defined networking (SDN), the need for analytics, service assurance, advanced advertising and mobile payments.

You can see the full list of Leading Lights awards finalists here (free registration required).

The Leading Lights Awards and Light Reading's Hall of Fame winners will be revealed Wednesday, Nov. 7, at the Manhattan Penthouse in New York City.

Now, here's why these nine private companies, in no particular order, made the cut.

Square Inc.
The company created by Twitter Inc. co-founder Jack Dorsey in 2009, Square Inc. , is one of the sexiest tech startups around, offering a new way for people -- and particularly small businesses -- to buy and sell goods. Its credit card reader fits into the earphone jack of Apple Inc. (Nasdaq: AAPL) or Android smartphones and tablets, making it possible for anyone, anywhere to accept credit card payments. That simplicity is what makes the mobile payment gadget successful, and is what has spurred the company's rapid growth. When Square announced Series D funding in September -- which was reported to be around $200 million -- the company claimed that it had about 400 employees and processed $8 billion in payments on an annualized basis. But a year earlier it had just 150 employees and processed $1 billion in payments on an annualized basis.

And Square is expanding to work with bigger businesses and go into new markets as well. The first and most significant move in this direction is a partnership with Starbucks, through which the coffee retailer will invest $25 million in the company and use Square to process card payments across its 7,000 shops in the U.S. Square has also taken its card reader to Canada, its first market entry outside the U.S.

But here's a question to ponder: Would Square be such a hit today if it was called Squirrel, as originally planned?



ASSIA Inc.
The DSL line management specialist founded by Light Reading Hall of Famer John Cioffi in 2003 is on a roll, and shows that there is still room for innovation to improve DSL services and reduce service providers operating costs.

As one measure of how widely ASSIA Inc. 's software is now deployed, service providers use it to manage and optimize about 60 million DSL lines worldwide. The company recently landed its first customer in China -- China Telecom Jiangsu -- for its DSL Expresse product; and it also added new tools for monitoring and diagnosing residential Wi-Fi network performance. The key to ASSIA's DSL management is the company's Dynamic Spectrum Management (DSM) technology.



ConteXtream
This is one of the hottest software-defined networking (SDN) startups. ConteXtream 's software, called Grid, creates a fabric that connects any network element to any other. With investments from carrier heavyweights Verizon Communications Inc. (NYSE: VZ) and Comcast Corp. (Nasdaq: CMCSA, CMCSK), the startup is now looking to apply SDN to wireless networks with the introduction of a new version of its Grid software that enables Evolved Packet Core (EPC) virtualization.



BlackArrow Inc.
As consumers watch less traditional TV and more time-shifted, video-on-demand content on various devices, advertisers need a way to reach them and BlackArrow Inc. 's advanced advertising system does just that. The system enables ads to be managed and delivered to any connected device, whether it's a TV, smartphone, tablet or game console. And the company has attracted some big service providers: Comcast, Time Warner Cable Inc. (NYSE: TWC) and Rogers Communications Inc. (Toronto: RCI) have each recently rolled out the BlackArrow advanced advertising system.



Page 2: More candidates

(0)  | 
Comment  | 
Print  | 
Newest First  |  Oldest First  |  Threaded View        ADD A COMMENT
More Blogs from Wireless Bits
Undercuts Huawei and ZTE in China Mobile 4G tender
CTO says vendor is seeking insight and inspiration from developer competitions
After a few months away, Sarah Reedy is back on the Light Reading team
Four new focus areas for NGMN Alliance highlight the key challenges facing mobile network operators in 2013
9:00 AM Smartphones have bigger mobile data appetites than tablets in Europe
From The Founder
The independent evaluation of Nokia's key virtual network functions (VNFs) was a defining moment for the Finnish giant.
Flash Poll
Live Streaming Video
Charting the CSP’s Future
Six different communications service providers join to debate their visions of the future CSP, following a landmark presentation from AT&T on its massive virtualization efforts and a look back on where the telecom industry has been and where it’s going from two industry veterans.
LRTV Custom TV
Cisco's Innovations in Cable

5|26|16   |   03:18   |   (0) comments


Marc Aldrich from Cisco discusses the latest in security, the evolution and momentum for CCAP and what the industry will be seeing next from Cisco.
LRTV Documentaries
Leading Lights 2016 Highlights

5|25|16   |   02:26   |   (1) comment


Some of the high points from this year's Leading Lights awards dinner at the Hotel Ella in Austin, Texas.
LRTV Documentaries
Light Reading Hall of Fame 2016

5|23|16   |   05:43   |   (0) comments


Find out who has been welcomed into Light Reading's Hall of Fame this year.
LRTV Custom TV
ZTE TM Forum Highlights

5|23|16   |     |   (0) comments


ZTE showcased its new ICT solutions at TM Forum in Nice.
LRTV Interviews
Gamma's MD on the Emergence of UC2

5|20|16   |     |   (0) comments


Gamma Communications Managing Director David Macfarlane believes the unified communications (UC) market has reached a tipping point.
LRTV Custom TV
The Ultimate 5-Minute Guide to Digital Customer Engagement

5|20|16   |     |   (0) comments


In this short video, you will hear all about how Digital Customer Engagement is the key to meeting customer expectations, keeping them happy, and maximizing revenue. VP Product & Marketing at Pontis, Ofer Razon, breaks down for us the five essential capabilities for successful Digital Customer Engagement. Don’t miss!
LRTV Custom TV
NFV in 2016: Part 1 – NFV Use Cases Get Real

5|19|16   |   05:57   |   (0) comments


Consensus is building around the key use cases for NFV, including managed IP services at the network edge and on customer premises, which can generate new revenues from enterprises/SMBs and consumers; Evolved Packet Core to support LTE migration; and adjacent technologies, such as TAS and IMS, to support VoLTE and next-generation charging and policy control ...
LRTV Custom TV
Nokia's Steve Vogelsang on NFV – Part 3

5|19|16   |     |   (0) comments


Steve Vogelsang discusses the challenges of operational transformation and how Nokia helps its customers. Join Steve at the Big Communications Event in Austin the morning of May 24, on his keynote and optical networking panel.
LRTV Interviews
Level 3: Why UC Is In Demand

5|17|16   |   04:12   |   (1) comment


Andrew Edison, Level 3's senior VP of sales, EMEA region, talks about the drivers of growth in the unified communications services market.
LRTV Custom TV
ARM's OPNFV Action

5|17|16   |     |   (0) comments


At the ARM booth at MWC 2016, Joe Kidder and Bob Monkman speak to Light Reading about OPNFV and their upcoming action.
LRTV Custom TV
Nokia's Steve Vogelsang on NFV – Part 2

5|16|16   |     |   (0) comments


Steve Vogelsang gives advice to service providers on how to move to NFV. Join Steve at the Big Communications Event in Austin the morning of May 24, on his keynote and optical networking panel.
LRTV Interviews
Interoute CTO on NFV's Maturity

5|13|16   |   06:46   |   (1) comment


Matt Finnie, CTO at international operator Interoute, explains how NFV has made life easier in terms of logistics and how Interoute can now enable a 'software-defined moment' for its customers.
Upcoming Live Events
September 13-14, 2016, The Curtis Hotel, Denver, CO
December 6-8, 2016,
June 16-18, 2017, Austin Convention Center, Austin, TX
All Upcoming Live Events
Infographics
A new survey conducted by Heavy Reading and TM Forum shows that CSPs around the world see the move to digital operations as a necessary part of their overall virtualization strategies.
Hot Topics
DT: Telcos Must Escape Vendor Prison
Iain Morris, News Editor, 5/24/2016
AT&T to Start 5G 'Friendly' Trial by 2016 End
Dan Jones, Mobile Editor, 5/24/2016
Cisco's Patel Hails 'Microculture' Successes
Iain Morris, News Editor, 5/26/2016
Cable Is Eyeing Its Retail Options
Mari Silbey, Senior Editor, Cable/Video, 5/25/2016
AT&T's Margaret Chiosi Retires
Ray Le Maistre, Editor-in-chief, 5/25/2016
Like Us on Facebook
Twitter Feed
BETWEEN THE CEOs - Executive Interviews
In this latest installment of the CEO Chat series, Craig Labovitz, co-founder and CEO of Deepfield, sits down with Light Reading's Steve Saunders in Light Reading's New York City office to discuss how Deepfield fits in with the big data trend and more.
Grant van Rooyen, president and CEO of Cologix, sits down with Steve Saunders, founder and CEO of Light Reading, in the vendor's New Jersey facility to offer an inside look at the company's success story and discuss the importance of security in the telecom industry.
Animals with Phones
Live Digital Audio

Our world has evolved through innovation from the Industrial Revolution of the 1740s to the information age, and it is now entering the Fourth Industrial Revolution, driven by technology. Technology is driving a paradigm shift in the way digital solutions deliver a connected world, changing the way we live, communicate and provide solutions. It can have a powerful impact on how we tackle some of the world’s most pressing problems. In this radio show, Caroline Dowling, President of Communications Infrastructure & Enterprise Computing at Flex, will join Women in Comms Director Sarah Thomas to discuss the impact technology has on society and how it can be a game-changer across the globe; improving lives and creating a smarter world. Dowling, a Cork, Ireland, native and graduate of Harvard Business School's Advanced Management Program, will also discuss her experience managing an international team focused on innovation in an age of high-speed change.