& cplSiteName &

Ericsson Bags Azuki Systems

Alan Breznick
2/6/2014
50%
50%

Seeking to become an even bigger player in the developing TV Everywhere market, Ericsson is buying Azuki Systems, a startup focused on delivering adaptive video streaming and content protection technologies to serve content providers.

Ericsson AB (Nasdaq: ERIC) announced Thursday morning that it will acquire Azuki Systems and integrate Azuki's offerings into its own portfolio. Terms of the agreement were not disclosed, but Ericsson said it expects to close the deal by the end of this month.

In the press release announcing the deal, Ericsson said the acquisition will enable it to "accelerate the availability of new and compelling viewing experiences across a variety of devices and screens." Further, the company said the Azuki purchase will bring "additional key functionality related to the deployment of TV Anywhere services, as well as "a team of highly skilled software engineers from Azuki Systems."

Based in the Boston suburbs with its 49 employees, Azuki is currently one of Ericsson's smaller rivals in the congested multiscreen video space. Azuki, founded in 2008, has made its mark by developing an architecture that takes adaptive bit-rate streams delivered in one format, Apple Inc. (Nasdaq: AAPL)'s HTTP Live Streaming (HLS), and converts them to formats that end-consumer devices can handle. The firm's flagship Media Platform appliance, which hooks into a service provider's content management system (CMS), can carry out this conversion for live, on-demand, and online video programming. (See Azuki Pitches Simplified TV Everywhere to MSOs.)

With this technology in hand, Azuki has signed up mainly small and midsized cable operators, IPTV providers, and mobile operators, as well as a few major programmers. Its announced customers notably include CenturyLink Inc. (NYSE: CTL), Buckeye CableSystem , Bermuda CableVision , Home Box Office Inc. (HBO) , and Showtime Networks Inc. .

Ben Huang, head of global marketing for Ericsson's new Mediaroom unit, told Light Reading that Azuki's technologies will be incorporated into Mediaroom's offerings. He said the Azuki systems will enable Mediaroom to deliver video streaming of over-the-top (OTT) content, as well as out-of-home streaming, to its customers.

The big challenge for Mediaroom's customers right now, Huang said, is that they have to use different platforms to deliver content in the home and outside the home and different back-end platforms and work-flow processes to manage everything. With Azuki's systems hooked into Mediaroom's platform, he said, Ericsson will be able to offer "seamless" integration of in-home and out-of-home streaming and back-end capabilities to its service providers. Mediaroom, which Ericsson bought from Microsoft Corp. (Nasdaq: MSFT) last year, now works with 63 providers in 25 markets around the world.

Azuki also plays in the digital rights management (DRM) space. In the mobile market, for instance, it offers the Azuki Wireless Platform (AWP), an appliance that delivers live and on-demand with DRM protection to mobile devices, especially smartphones and tablets. (See Azuki Box Takes DRM Over the Top.)

Even with its acquisition of Azuki, Ericsson still faces plenty of competition in the TV Everywhere space. Other players include Cisco Systems Inc. (Nasdaq: CSCO), Harmonic Inc. (Nasdaq: HLIT), RGB Networks Inc. , and Envivio Inc. (NASDAQ: ENVI).

— Alan Breznick, Cable/Video Practice Leader, Light Reading

(6)  | 
Comment  | 
Print  | 
Newest First  |  Oldest First  |  Threaded View        ADD A COMMENT
mhhf1ve
50%
50%
mhhf1ve,
User Rank: Light Sabre
3/3/2014 | 7:31:19 PM
Larger Trends?
Does anyone else think this is part of a larger trend for service providers to try to gain more control over content (especially video)? If so, what does it mean for the future when more operators are increasingly vertically integrated with content? 
albreznick
50%
50%
albreznick,
User Rank: Blogger
2/28/2014 | 5:09:04 PM
Re: Looks like a smart move for Ericsson
My other question for you, David, is do you think Ericsson will rest there. Or will they be scooping up other small specialists as wsell?  
albreznick
50%
50%
albreznick,
User Rank: Blogger
2/26/2014 | 9:53:29 PM
Re: Looks like a smart move for Ericsson
I'd agree with you there, David. Will be intersting to see how successful they are at doing that.  
David Dines
50%
50%
David Dines,
User Rank: Blogger
2/19/2014 | 10:54:00 AM
Re: Looks like a smart move for Ericsson
I have not spoken to Ericsson yet about it and I have no insights into how they integrated their past acquisitions, so I have not formed an opinion. Though I would imgaine that Ericsson is pretty motivated to retain the team that Cheng built. 
albreznick
50%
50%
albreznick,
User Rank: Blogger
2/18/2014 | 9:53:32 PM
Re: Looks like a smart move for Ericsson
I agree, David. And Azuki apperared to be gaining somne treaction too. Now the question is how well will Ericsson manage them and retain them. What do you expect to happen? 
David Dines
50%
50%
David Dines,
User Rank: Blogger
2/6/2014 | 7:09:35 PM
Looks like a smart move for Ericsson
I have met the Azuki people and was very impressed by the people and I thought their approach makes a lot of sense.  It will be interesting to see how they are integrated into the larger company from a personnel and portfolio standpoint.
From The Founder
Cisco's Conrad Clemson, recently promoted to head up the company's Service Provider Apps & Platforms developments, talks to Light Reading's Founder and CEO Steve Saunders about how he's bringing cloud video, mobile and virtualization together to empower network operators.
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 Interviews
MWC 2017's Key 2-Letter Terms

2|20|17   |   08:29   |   (1) comment


5G, AI, VR... these are just some of the two-letter terms that will dominate show-floor chat at MWC 2017 in Barcelona, according to these two blow-hards (a.k.a. Scott Bicheno of Telecoms.com and Light Reading's Ray Le Maistre). And then there's PB...
LRTV Interviews
Key Trends for Mobile Operators in Developing Markets

2|20|17   |   06:37   |   (0) comments


Ovum's Matthew Reed talks to Scott Bicheno from Telecoms.com about the challenges and opportunities facing mobile operators in the developing markets of Africa and the Middle East.
LRTV Documentaries
YouTube Takes on Facebook Live-Streaming

2|17|17   |     |   (0) comments


Popular 'YouTubers' will be the first to get the new service on their smartphones. You have been warned.
LRTV Custom TV
Open Source NFV/SDN Automation

2|17|17   |   05:54   |   (0) comments


AT&T ECOMP (Enhanced Control, Orchestration, Management and Policy) code is transitioning into the Linux Foundation for placement into open source. In this video, Carol Wilson provides an update on the maturation of open source ECOMP and meets with industry leaders from AT&T, Bell Canada, Orange, Linux Foundation and Amdocs to discuss what this means for the ...
LRTV Documentaries
Uber & NASA Collaborate on Flying Car Project

2|16|17   |     |   (0) comments


Is Uber for real? Well, it's hired NASA engineer Mark Moore to lead the project, and he wouldn't come cheap.
LRTV Documentaries
Zuckerberg Tries Out the Oculus Rift VR Glove

2|15|17   |     |   (0) comments


Facebook CEO shows off a new way to interact with the Oculus Rift virtual reality headset: an Oculus glove.
LRTV Custom TV
Huawei Digital Transformation Forum 2017

2|10|17   |     |   (0) comments


Here's a preview of the upcoming Huawei Digital Transformation Forum taking place in Barcelona with trending telecom topics like cloud, IoT, 5G and much more!
Telecom Innovators Video Showcase
Dan Sahar of Qwilt on Open Edge Cloud Platform

2|8|17   |   08:38   |   (0) comments


Dan Sahar, Qwilt's co-founder, sits down with Steve Saunders of Light Reading for a conversation about Qwilt's Open Edge Cloud platform and the new role of service providers in application and content delivery.
LRTV Documentaries
ZeroStack's 'Self-Driving Cloud'

2|7|17   |   01:09   |   (0) comments


Its Z-Brain tech automates day-to-day management and long-term planning for hybrid clouds.
Telecom Innovators Video Showcase
Nominum's Craig Sprosts on DNS & Cybersecurity Trends

2|7|17   |     |   (0) comments


Nominum's Craig Sprosts talks about the fast-changing landscape of cybersecurity with Steve Saunders of Light Reading. Sprosts touches on the trend of the rise of ransomwares, rivals of IoT base attacks, and mobile network security. He also discusses the realization of the importance of IoT security after a recent cyber attack that paralyzed several major ...
LRTV Documentaries
China Moves Towards Mixed Ownership of Telcos

2|1|17   |   01:10   |   (0) comments


Chinese authorities are promoting new ownership models in order to raise capital.
Shades of Ray
What to Expect at MWC 2017

1|31|17   |     |   (0) comments


5G is set to dominate as the key buzz term at this year's Mobile World Congress but there are other pressing 4G matters to address.
Upcoming Live Events
March 21-22, 2017, The Curtis Hotel, Denver, CO
March 22, 2017, The Curtis Hotel, Denver, CO
March 22, 2017, The Curtis Hotel, Denver, CO
May 15-17, 2017, Austin Convention Center, Austin, TX
May 15, 2017, Austin Convention Center - Austin, TX
June 6, 2017, The Joule Hotel, Dallas, TX
All Upcoming Live Events
Infographics
With the mobile ecosystem becoming increasingly vulnerable to security threats, AdaptiveMobile has laid out some of the key considerations for the wireless community.
Hot Topics
T-Mobile CEO: M&A Coming but Not Quite Yet
Dan Jones, Mobile Editor, 2/14/2017
Is the Time Right for a Cisco/Ericsson Wedding?
Ray Le Maistre, Editor-in-chief, 2/17/2017
Nice to See at Least One CSP Taking My Advice
Mitch Wagner, Editor, Enterprise Cloud, 2/17/2017
Charter Launches 5G Field Trials
Mari Silbey, Senior Editor, Cable/Video, 2/16/2017
WiCipedia: Fintech Flexibility, Snap Missteps & Women of Wearables
Eryn Leavens, Special Features & Copy Editor, 2/17/2017
Like Us on Facebook
Twitter Feed
BETWEEN THE CEOs - Executive Interviews
Light Reading founder and CEO Steve Saunders chats with Sportlogiq CEO Craig Buntin about sports data analysis.
Eyal Waldman, CEO of Mellanox Technologies, speaks to Steve Saunders, CEO of Light Reading, for an exclusive interview about the 100 GB cable challenge, cybersecurity and much more.
Animals with Phones
Live Digital Audio

Playing it safe can only get you so far. Sometimes the biggest bets have the biggest payouts, and that is true in your career as well. For this radio show, Caroline Chan, general manager of the 5G Infrastructure Division of the Network Platform Group at Intel, will share her own personal story of how she successfully took big bets to build a successful career, as well as offer advice on how you can do the same. We’ll cover everything from how to overcome fear and manage risk, how to be prepared for where technology is going in the future and how to structure your career in a way to ensure you keep progressing. Chan, a seasoned telecom veteran and effective risk taker herself, will also leave plenty of time to answer all your questions live on the air.