Light Reading
Mobile messaging and management specialist to seek buyers for its product lines and focus on its patent portfolio

Openwave Puts Products Up for Sale

Ray Le Maistre
LR Mobile News Analysis
Ray Le Maistre, Editor-in-chief
1/12/2012
50%
50%

Following a year of financial toil and a change in management, Openwave Systems Inc. (Nasdaq: OPWV) has decided to quit the messaging and mediation products markets and focus all its efforts on its patent portfolio.

The company announced Thursday that it is has hired Jefferies & Co. Inc. to find buyers for its product lines and will focus on driving revenues from its intellectual property in an effort to become profitable again.

The company notes on its website that it "established many of the foundational patents that allow mobile devices to connect to the Internet," and that it has "approximately 200 patents covering many innovations spanning smart devices, cloud technologies and unified messaging."

The move comes after a tough 2011 for the mobile Service Provider Information Technology (SPIT) specialist, during which the company reported mounting losses, cut staff and appointed a new CEO. (See More Turmoil at Openwave, Openwave Cuts Staff as Losses Mount and Openwave Names New CEO.)

Shortly after Mike Mulica took over as CEO in October the company hired two experienced intellectual property specialists to head up its IP patent portfolio business. (See Openwave Hires Patent Experts.)

Investors appear to like the move, as Openwave's share price is up nearly 7 percent to $1.89 in pre-market trading Thursday morning.

Why this matters
Openwave was caught in a downward spiral. It had been trying to reinvent itself as an all-IP messaging and mediation system company for the mobile data market and had been positioning itself as a company that could help mobile operators with their data and video traffic optimization needs. But as 2011 progressed, rival Bytemobile Inc. gained momentum in that market while Openwave struggled. (See Waking Up to the Power of SPIT and Bytemobile Ekes Out More Capacity .)

The more focused strategy might save it from further years of product-related operating losses, but whether it can find a home for its product lines is another matter. The company says it will make announcements "as, and when, a specific transaction or transactions occur."

More immediately, Openwave's 440 or so staff and around 100 service provider customers will want to know what the company's changes mean for them.

Its strategy to capitalize on its patents might just work, though. The specialists it hired have a track record of generating hundreds of millions of dollars in IPR-related revenues at Good Technology Inc. and Openwave has already struck a license agreement with Microsoft Corp. (Nasdaq: MSFT) for its patent portfolio, giving it an impressive anchor customer.

It has also initiated action against Apple Inc. (Nasdaq: AAPL) and BlackBerry regarding patent infringement. (See Openwave Sues Apple & RIM.)

For more
Openwave isn't the only company looking to generate greater returns from its patent portfolio.

— Ray Le Maistre, International Managing Editor, Light Reading

(3)  | 
Comment  | 
Print  | 
Newest First  |  Oldest First  |  Threaded View
digits
50%
50%
digits,
User Rank: Light Beer
12/5/2012 | 5:45:53 PM
re: Openwave Puts Products Up for Sale


Does anyone have a view on whether Openwave had the wrong strategy or the right one but poorly executed?


 

paolo.franzoi
50%
50%
paolo.franzoi,
User Rank: Light Beer
12/5/2012 | 5:45:52 PM
re: Openwave Puts Products Up for Sale


 


I think that the ISP business is hard.  Selling to ISPs is a like getting blood from a stone.


Think about this (since this is the business I am in)....how much do you pay for your residential spam filter.  How much do you think your ISP is willing to spend on it?


seven


 

Jeff Baumgartner
50%
50%
Jeff Baumgartner,
User Rank: Light Beer
12/5/2012 | 5:45:51 PM
re: Openwave Puts Products Up for Sale


It seems like a hidden cost, so i have no sense on how much that is. As far as the plan goes, they could do well if they focus on licensing and litigation... at least no one can call them a patent troll since they did run a business based on its IP rather than buying the IP and then letting the lawsuits fly. JB

Flash Poll
From The Founder
It's clear to me that the communications industry is divided into two types of people, and only one is living in the real world.
LRTV Huawei Video Resource Center
Dr. Dong Sun Talks About Carriers' Digital Transformation & Huawei’s Telco OS

1|29|15   |   6:28   |   (0) comments


Dr. Dong Sun, Chief Architect of Digital Transformation Solutions at Huawei, discusses how telecom operators can become digital ecosystem enablers and deliver optimal user experiences that are in real-time, on-demand, all-online, DIY and social (ROADS).
LRTV Huawei Video Resource Center
Huawei's Chief Network Architect Talks about Network Experience & Operators’ Strategies

1|29|15   |   3:39   |   (0) comments


In the digital age, network experience has become the primary productivity especially for telecom operators. In this video, Wenshuan Dang, Huawei’s Chief Network Architect, discusses how carriers can tackle the challenge of infrastructure complexity in order to enhance business agility and improve user experience.
LRTV Documentaries
The Rise of Virtual CPE

1|27|15   |   01:38   |   (5) comments


As NFV strategies evolve from tests and trials to production telco networks, expect to hear a lot about virtual CPE (customer premises equipment) rollouts during 2015.
LRTV Documentaries
Optical Is Hot in 2015

1|23|15   |   01:56   |   (2) comments


Optical comms technology underpins the whole communications sector and there are some really hot trends set for 2015.
LRTV Custom TV
Policy Control in the Fast Lane

1|22|15   |   2:57   |   (0) comments


What's making policy control strategic in 2015 and beyond? Amdocs talks with Heavy Reading's Graham Finnie about the key factors driving change in the data services landscape. Find out what his policy management research reveals about the road ahead for policy control – and sign up for
LRTV Documentaries
Highlights From the 2020 Vision Executive Summit

1|21|15   |   4:33   |   (2) comments


In December 2014, Light Reading brought together telecom executives in Reykjavik, Iceland to discuss their vision for high-capacity networks through the end of the decade. The intimate, interactive meeting was set against the backdrop of Iceland's spectacular natural beauty. As one of the event's founding sponsors, Cisco's Doug Webster shared his company's ...
LRTV Huawei Video Resource Center
Huawei Pay-TV Partner Harmonic, Helping Carriers Accelerate 4K Video Deployment with Huawei

1|20|15   |   5:42   |   (1) comment


At IBC, Peter Alexander, Senior Vice President & CMO at Harmonic, speaks about the growing interest in pay-TV service and its branching into multiple devices.
LRTV Huawei Video Resource Center
Sony Marketing Director Olivier Bovis Discusses the Outlook for 4K and Cooperation With Huawei at IBC 2014

1|20|15   |   6:50   |   (0) comments


At IBC, Olivier Bovis, Marketing Director of Sony, speaks about the coming of the 4K era.
LRTV Huawei Video Resource Center
Huawei Pay-TV Partner Envivio, Helping Carriers Accelerate 4K Video Deployment

1|20|15   |   2:57   |   (0) comments


At IBC, Olivier Bovis, Marketing Director of Sony, speaks about the coming of the 4K era.
LRTV Huawei Video Resource Center
Pay-TV's Networked Future

1|20|15   |   6:29   |   (0) comments


At IBC, Jeff Heynen, Principal Analyst at Infonetics, speaks about the future of the pay-TV industry and its transition.
LRTV Huawei Video Resource Center
Jeff Heynen: Distributed Access Will Help MSOs Compete in the Future

1|20|15   |   2:26   |   (0) comments


At IBC, Jeff Heynen, Principal Analyst at Infonetics, speaks about moving to distributed access and the future trend of cable business.
LRTV Interviews
Cisco Talks Transformation

1|20|15   |   13:02   |   (0) comments


In December 2014, Steve Saunders sat down with Cisco VP of Products & Solutions Marketing Doug Webster at Light Reading's 2020 Vision executive summit in Reykjavik, Iceland. They spoke about Cisco's approach to network virtualization as well as how service providers can begin to monetize high-capacity networks through the end of the decade.
Upcoming Live Events
February 5, 2015, Washington, DC
February 19, 2015, The Fairmont San Jose, San Jose, CA
March 17, 2015, The Cable Center, Denver, CO
April 14, 2015, The Westin Times Square, New York City, NY
May 12, 2015, Grand Hyatt, Denver, CO
May 13-14, 2015, The Westin Peachtree, Atlanta, GA
June 8, 2015, Chicago, IL
June 9-10, 2015, Chicago, IL
June 9, 2015, Chicago, IL
September 9-10, 2015, The Westin Galleria Dallas, Dallas, TX
September 29-30, 2015, The Westin Grand Müchen, Munich, Germany
November 11-12, 2015, The Westin Peachtree Plaza, Atlanta, GA
December 1, 2015, The Westin Times Square, New York City
December 2-3, 2015, The Westin Times Square, New York City
Infographics
Hot Topics
Google Continues Gigabit Expansion
Jason Meyers, Senior Editor, Gigabit Cities/IoT, 1/27/2015
Comcast Apologizes to 'A**hole' Brown
Mitch Wagner, West Coast Bureau Chief, Light Reading, 1/29/2015
US Ops Spend $32.5M to Bring 4G to Chicago's Subways
Sarah Thomas, Editorial Operations Director, 1/30/2015
Cablevision's New WiFi Try – Freewheeling Enough?
Mari Silbey, Independent Technology Editor, 1/26/2015
Overture Builds on NFV Foundation
Mitch Wagner, West Coast Bureau Chief, Light Reading, 1/27/2015
Like Us on Facebook
Twitter Feed
Webinar Archive
BETWEEN THE CEOs - Weekly Executive Interview
Join us live for Light Reading's interview with Jay Samit, the newly appointed CEO of publicly traded SeaChange International Inc. With a resume that includes Sony, EMI, and Universal, Samit brings a reputation as an entrepreneur and a disruptor to his new role at the video solutions company. Hear what he has to say about the opportunities in video, as well as the outlook for cable, telco, OTT and mobile service providers.