& cplSiteName &

Infinera CEO Campaigns for Growth

Light Reading
News Analysis
Light Reading
9/5/2012
50%
50%

Infinera Corp. (Nasdaq: INFN) CEO Tom Fallon says he won't be updating his company's quarterly guidance as he takes the stage today at the Citi Technology Conference in New York City.

Whew.

But will he announce a new customer? We'll see.

What is worth noting is that this week's speaking engagement comes almost exactly one year after Infinera’s launched its DTN-X packet optical platform, based on 500Gbit/s photonic integrated circuits (PICs), an announcement that had Infinera jumping ahead of the 100Gbit/s crowd after it took a pass on the 40Gbit/s market. (See A Peek Into Infinera's PICs and Infinera Unleashes Coherent 100G.)

Infinera has at least 10 purchase orders for its DTN-X platform, all of them signed since mid-June. One of those orders is from a Tier 1 carrier, widely believed to be Verizon Communications. "The Tier 1 that we have won we are not at liberty to say who it is yet, but I believe we’ll have that ability over the next quarter," Fallon tells Light Reading.

Infinera’s announced customers for the DTN-X include Cable & Wireless Worldwide and research and education network Dante. "It’s still a young market and for us to come in with this many customers in the first quarter of shipping, I’m pretty pumped up," he says.

Fallon’s feelings of confidence come not long after Infinera was passed over by XO Communications Inc. for its first 100Gbit/s deployment. The carrier committed to Nokia Siemens Networks instead. Though Infinera is an XO supplier, and XO indicated it will use Infinera’s DTN-X, the perception was that Infinera’s platform was not ready for the August announcement. An Infinera spokesman admitted that the DTN-X was not ready to fill what he described as a "stop-gap" need for XO, but added that XO's evaluation of the vendors came in the first quarter, before the DTN-X was ready to move off the loading dock.

"The vendor selection for 100G deployment across the XO network is not yet final," the Infinera spokesman says.

[Ed. note: For more on XO's NSN selection and how it unfolded, please see: XO Deploys First Nationwide 100G Network.]

Legacy laggards
Infinera, like Ciena, at least won’t be burdened with legacy gear as it tries to avoid the macro-economic trends cutting into the optical sector. Andrew Schmitt, principal analyst, optical, at Infonetics Research, suggested a few weeks ago that the Synchronous Optical Network (Sonet) market was cratering and said companies with revenue weighted toward legacy Sonet platforms face more of a threat.

"If your business is half WDM and half Sonet/SDH, and one is declining 15 percent a year and the other is growing 15 percent, your top line revenue is intrinsically flat," Schmitt says. "So companies with large amounts of legacy revenue in Tier-1 carriers have massive growth headwinds. But that is more a reflection of financial condition, not the quality of their WDM products."

Schmitt indicated that the increasingly busy 100 Gbit/s marketplace may offer some daylight, with carriers now able to get competitive bids from a longer list of suppliers. "Prices are dropping fast, so evaluation of 100G is going on in a big way now," he says.

That Infinera is pushing 500 Gbit/s flex-coherent superchannels on the DTN-X while most others are still focused on 100 Gb/s line cards should not delay appeal of fatter pipes, Schmitt adds. "There are always bleeding-edge customers who need that kind of bandwidth, but decisions on what I deploy today are about what I will need in the years down the road, so whether I can fill a 500G pipe immediately isn’t the core issue."

Fallon is betting that service providers will realize the benefit of investing in the packet-optical convergence, an area where PIC provides power and space benefits to allow lower-cost integration of transport, switching and bandwidth management. "Convergence of bandwidth management, switching and transport really is becoming a requirement in the industry," he says.

"There’s energy around how do we lower all costs, not just transport, not just switching, not just routing, but overall. People who are putting in 40G networks now are putting in less cost-effective networks than the competitors doing 100G, and that kind of mismatch in the industry won’t exist for very long," Fallon says.

The question for Infinera and other optical suppliers is how long they will have to wait. Fallon notes that the whole sector is focused on one question: "How much will the industry grow this year? Will it be 5 to 10 percent, or will it be more like 2 percent? If it stays flat, that’s a big deal for both Sonet and WDM."

There is increasing evidence that optical investor confidence is being shaken by the economy. Ciena's recent report and subsequent stock price drop and Infinera's string of quarterly losses aren't helping. (See Burnt Ciena: Optical Stock Falls After a Tough Quarter.) But Schmitt says there's a more optimistic angle here. "If Infinera takes three quarters rather than one to be profitable that isn't a big deal two or three years down the road. Quarterly results are important but you need to ignore the high-frequency noise."

— Dan O'Shea, special to Light Reading

(0)  | 
Comment  | 
Print  | 
Newest First  |  Oldest First  |  Threaded View        ADD A COMMENT
From The Founder
Kicking off BCE 2017, Light Reading founder Steve Saunders lays blame for NFV's slow ramp-up and urges telecom to return to old-fashioned standards building and interoperability.
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
VeEX at ANGA COM

6|27|17   |     |   (0) comments


At ANGA COM 2017, Cyrille Morelle, president and CEO of VeEX, updates Alan Breznick with VeEX's new products and technology. This includes VeSion cloud-based platform for network monitoring, AT2500-3G advanced spectrum analyzer and MTTplus-900 WiFi Air Expert module. He also comments on DOCSIS 3.1 deployment and Remote PHY technology.
LRTV Custom TV
The Overall Objective Is to Win the Game

6|26|17   |     |   (0) comments


SCTE•ISBE's Chris Bastian discusses Energy 2020's success to date and the importance of a flexible approach that allows for changes in specific strategies in order to reach significant milestones.
LRTV Interviews
CenturyLink: Let's Get Past SD-WAN Hype

6|23|17   |   04:02   |   (0) comments


Technology becomes a "shiny object" unless it's properly focused on solving business needs for enterprise customers, says Bill Grubbs, network solutions architect for CenturyLink. He explains to Light Reading why SD-WAN deployments have to be tailored to specific needs – and more.
Women in Comms Introduction Videos
Infinera's Sales Director Paints Tech's Big Picture

6|21|17   |   4:14   |   (1) comment


Shannon Williams, Infinera's director of sales, shares how she achieves work's many balancing acts -- between her role and the broader company, today and tomorrow's tech and more.
LRTV Custom TV
SD-WAN Innovation & Trends

6|20|17   |     |   (0) comments


Versa CEO Kelly Ahuja discusses with Carol Wilson the current status and trends in the SD-WAN market, Versa's innovation around building a software platform with broad contextualization, and the advantages that startups can bring to the SD-WAN market.
LRTV Interviews
Ovum's Dario Talmesio on 5G in Europe

6|20|17   |   02:16   |   (0) comments


At 5G World 2017, Dario Talmesio, principal analyst and practice leader on Ovum's fixed and mobile telecoms European team, explains the emerging trends amongst European operators as they prepare for 5G.
LRTV Custom TV
Putting Power on a Pedestal

6|19|17   |     |   (0) comments


ARRIS's John Ulm says a major accomplishment of SCTE•ISBE's Energy 2020 program is increased focus on power cost and consumption, including inclusion of energy requirements in operators' RFPs and RFIs.
LRTV Custom TV
Gigabit Access: The Last-Mile Pipe for All Future Services

6|19|17   |     |   (0) comments


A Gigabit access platform being deployed today must be able to deliver all types of services to an increasing number of devices. A non-blocking architecture is necessary to support the ever-increasing growth in bandwidth demand. The Huawei Gigabit access solution is based on a distributed design that is fully scalable to deliver a unprecedented performance.
LRTV Custom TV
Key Factors to Successfully Deploy an SD-WAN Service

6|19|17   |     |   (0) comments


As service providers transition their SD-WAN solution from trials and limited deployments into production at large scale, there are important considerations to successfully operationalize these solutions and realize their full potential, without adding complexity, introducing uncertainty or disrupting current business operations. Sunil Khandekar, CEO and Founder ...
LRTV Custom TV
IoT Solutions: Rational Exuberance

6|19|17   |     |   (0) comments


IoT solutions are morphing from hype into viable business opportunities. Huawei has the platform and ecosystem support to help carriers successfully address new business opportunities in the IoT space.
LRTV Custom TV
Realizing ICN as a Network Slice for Mobile Data Distribution

6|19|17   |     |   (1) comment


Network slicing in 5G allows the potential introduction of new network architectures such as Information-centric Networks (ICN) as a slice, managed over a shared pool of compute, storage and bandwidth resource. Services over an ICN slice can benefit from many architectural features such as Name Based Networking, Security, Multicasting, Multi-homing, Mobility, ...
LRTV Interviews
Ovum's Mike Roberts on 5G Uptake

6|19|17   |   04:08   |   (0) comments


Mike Roberts, research director for Ovum's service provider markets group, explains why he has boosted his 5G subscriptions forecast.
Upcoming Live Events
October 18, 2017, Colorado Convention Center - Denver, CO
November 1, 2017, The Montcalm Marble Arch
November 1, 2017, The Montcalm Marble Arch
November 2, 2017, 8 Northumberland Avenue, London, UK
November 30, 2017, The Westin Times Square
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
No Imagination: UK Chip Biz Goes Up for Sale
Iain Morris, News Editor, 6/22/2017
Does AT&T Deserve Time Warner?
Mari Silbey, Senior Editor, Cable/Video, 6/23/2017
Netflix's Lesson in Culture Expectation Settings
Sarah Thomas, Director, Women in Comms, 6/21/2017
Kalanick Steps Down as Uber CEO
Sarah Thomas, Director, Women in Comms, 6/21/2017
Like Us on Facebook
Twitter Feed
BETWEEN THE CEOs - Executive Interviews
Following a recent board meeting, the New IP Agency (NIA) has a new strategy to help accelerate the adoption of NFV capabilities, explains the Agency's Founder and Secretary, Steve Saunders.
One of the nice bits of my job (other than the teeny tiny salary, obviously) is that I get to pick and choose who I interview for this slot on the Light Reading home ...
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.