& 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
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.
Valley Wonk
OFC & Hyperscale: A Good Mix?

3|24|17   |   01:50   |   (0) comments


Cloud and telecom players want different types of equipment for their networks, as the chatter at OFC reveals.
LRTV Custom TV
Etisalat on NFV Journey

3|24|17   |   10:37   |   (0) comments


Etisalat is a service provider that prides itself on bringing innovative technologies to the markets it serves. It was one of the first operators to implement 3G and leads the pack in fiber penetration. Now, Esmaeel Al Hammadi, Etisalat's SVP of Network Development, explains the operator's journey to virtualization, beginning with the network core, as well as the ...
LRTV Huawei Video Resource Center
Huawei at CeBIT 2017: Day 3

3|22|17   |     |   (0) comments


Light Reading reports from CeBIT 2017 in Germany, where Huawei is exhibiting on the application of technologies and key business verticals such as transportation, smart city, manufacturing, media and finance.
LRTV Documentaries
No Regrets: Cox's Finkelstein on Fiber & More

3|22|17   |     |   (0) comments


At the Cable Next-Gen Technologies & Strategies event in Denver, Cox's Jeff Finkelstein examines the cable capex conundrum.
LRTV Documentaries
Cable Next-Gen: The 'Mile High' View From Denver

3|22|17   |   11:56   |   (0) comments


Alan Breznick kicks off the Cable Next-Gen Technologies & Strategies event in Denver, casting his thousand-yard stare over cable's current competitive landscape.
LRTV Huawei Video Resource Center
Huawei at CeBIT 2017: Day 2

3|21|17   |   2:27   |   (0) comments


Light Reading reports from CeBIT 2017 in Germany, where Huawei is exhibiting digital transformation solutions around IoT, smart data centers, OpenCloud ecosystem and its newly announced storage-as-a-service solution.
LRTV Custom TV
Driving Better Mobile Customer Experience While Transforming the Mobile Network

3|21|17   |   7:47   |   (0) comments


The Citrix NetScaler mobile gateway is an intelligent traffic management solution which can markedly improve the customer experience provided by mobile operators, even when traffic is encrypted. Critical network services can be consolidated and virtualized using NetScaler. Because of the unique architecture, NetScaler can be deployed on any hypervisor, on a ...
LRTV Custom TV
Mastercard: What's Next for Mobile Payments?

3|21|17   |   7:49   |   (0) comments


2017 marks the fifth consecutive year for Mastercard at Mobile World Congress and it was a great time to reflect on the amazing advances the payments industry has made as well as discuss "What's Next' in the digital commerce future. We spoke to James Anderson, executive vice president of digital payments at MasterCard, about digital wallets to tokenization to ...
LRTV Custom TV
Mastercard: 2 Billion Adults 'Trapped' in Cash Economy

3|21|17   |   03:51   |   (1) comment


Despite advances made in the last several years, two billion adults around the world are trapped in a cash economy and lack what we take for granted -- a safe way to receive, save and use money. Shamina Singh, executive vice president of sustainability and president of the Mastercard Center for Inclusive Growth, chats about how Mastercard is developing new ways to ...
LRTV Custom TV
Mastercard: Payment From Every Device

3|21|17   |   5:55   |   (0) comments


A world where everything and everyone is connected creates new points of interaction for commerce. These digital experiences cannot be developed in isolation and instead require an ecosystem to drive mass consumer and enterprise adoption and create better consumer engagement. Predicting when that growth will happen is difficult, but always keeping the end user in ...
LRTV Interviews
InterDigital's Role in the 5G, IoT Era

3|21|17   |   05:47   |   (0) comments


Alan Carlton, managing director and VP for Europe at InterDigital, talks about the company's role in 5G projects in Europe and the prospects for the company in the IoT market.
LRTV Interviews
Lessons Learned From Digital Transformation

3|21|17   |   05:51   |   (0) comments


Ravi Palepu, global head of Telco Solutions at Virtusa, talks about some key takeaways from telco digital transformation experiences during the past couple of years.
Upcoming Live Events
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
High-Band 5G: Let's Address the Range Question, Shall We?
Dan Jones, Mobile Editor, 3/21/2017
Eurobites: Italy First Pasta the Post for 5G
Paul Rainford, Assistant Editor, Europe, 3/17/2017
Eurobites: A1, Nokia Turn It Up to 11
Paul Rainford, Assistant Editor, Europe, 3/22/2017
5G Faces a Marathon, Not a Sprint
Iain Morris, News Editor, 3/17/2017
Like Us on Facebook
Twitter Feed
BETWEEN THE CEOs - Executive Interviews
TEOCO Founder and CEO Atul Jain talks to Light Reading Founder and CEO Steve Saunders about the challenges around cost control and service monetization in the mobile and IoT sectors.
At MWC 2017, Qualcomm's CTO Matt Grob talks to Light Reading's CEO and Founder Steve Saunders about the progress being made in the development of the technologies and standards that will underpin 5G.
Animals with Phones
Neither Do We Click Here
Is that a prerequisite?
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.