& cplSiteName &

ASIP, T-Networks Reach Apogee

Light Reading
News Analysis
Light Reading
7/26/2005
50%
50%

Laser manufacturer ASIP Inc. added to its M&A resume today by acquiring T-Networks Inc. for an undisclosed sum.

The combined company will go by the name Apogee Photonics Inc. and is getting $9.7 million in funding as a launch gift. Investors participating include Atlas Venture, BlueRun Ventures, Finaventures, and Redpoint Ventures from the ASIP side; TL Ventures from the T-Networks side; and Intel Capital, which had invested in both companies (see ASIP Merges With T-Networks).

An apogee is the point where a planet or moon is furthest away in its orbit -- such as when Pluto gets to its furthest point from the sun and becomes even more icy, desolate, and hopeless. Of course, Apogee has a different spin on the name. "We like to think of it as the apex or the peak," says Mike Decelle, CEO of ASIP and, now, CEO of Apogee.

The deal is billed as a merger, but ASIP would seem to be the acquirer here. The company pulled off a similar trick last year with the acquisition of ThreeFive Photonics B.V., picking up $7.5 million from ThreeFive's investors in the deal (see Survival of the Smallest). While Decelle remains CEO, he says T-Networks will be amply represented in the Apogee executive ranks.

ASIP had raised $31 million to date, including the ThreeFive windfall. T-Networks bagged more than $60 million in three rounds, including a $30.6 million series that closed in 2002 and a $5.75 million dribble earlier this year (see T-Networks Takes In $30.6M and T-Networks Scores $5.75M).

ASIP and T-Networks both sell 10-Gbit/s lasers -- not the full transceivers, just the lasers. The difference is that ASIP targeted moderate reaches with a 1310nm laser, while T-Networks attacked the high-end with 1550nm devices intended for reaches of 80 km and beyond. By combining forces, the companies can cover a larger swath of the 10-Gbit/s space.

Breadth counts for something, because the market for optical lasers and transceivers is so finely segmented among different speeds, different reaches, and different laser types. Companies can choose to be a leader in one segment, but those that can cover more markets might have better long-term prospects, says Tom Hausken, analyst with Strategies Unlimited.

Hausken likens the situation to the recently concluded Tour de France, where Lance Armstrong won his seventh title. "He doesn't win all the stages. Somebody who's a specialist at that particular stage or who wants to go for broke wins the stage, but [in the end] they finish around 100th," Hausken says. "Every company can win a stage, but it's not too many companies that have breadth."

So, who would Apogee compete with? The big-name components suppliers -- Avanex Corp. (Nasdaq: AVNX), Bookham Inc. (Nasdaq: BKHM; London: BHM), JDS Uniphase Corp. (Nasdaq: JDSU; Toronto: JDU), and to some extent -- focus on integrated parts, selling transceivers and laser modules rather than the bare lasers Apogee deals in. While the big companies have their own lasers, Apogee is hoping they'll want to buy higher-performance parts for some applications.

When it comes to the 10-Gbit/s lasers themselves, Apogee will compete with the likes of Covega Corp., Emcore Corp. (Nasdaq: EMKR), Mitsubishi Electric Corp. (Tokyo: 6503), and Modulight Inc.

Competition might also arise from startups applying quantum dots or quantum well intermixing to lasers: Examples include Intense Ltd. and Zia Laser Inc. ThreeFive's technology might give ASIP a shot at this angle, too (see ASIP Connects Quantum Dots).

Apogee officials aren't giving details about headcount, although they admit the usual post-merger layoffs are coming. Decelle says ASIP and T-Networks had roughly the same number of employees and that Apogee will retain a "significant fraction of the total we have today," that total being in the "low triple digits." T-Networks had gone through a rough spot in 2003, shedding a few employees and losing an executive or two, and founder Steve O'Brien left sometime last year (see Headcount: Tossers, Headcount: Memo Minder, and Headcount: Family Time (Reprise)).

Both ASIP and T-Networks owned indium phosphide (InP) fabrication facilities, one of which will be shut down, although Decelle isn't revealing which one. As ASIP was based in Somerset, N.J., and T-Networks in Allentown, Pa., the fabs aren't that far apart.

— Craig Matsumoto, Senior Editor, Light Reading

(2)  | 
Comment  | 
Print  | 
Newest First  |  Oldest First  |  Threaded View        ADD A COMMENT
deauxfaux
50%
50%
deauxfaux,
User Rank: Light Beer
12/5/2012 | 3:07:15 AM
re: ASIP, T-Networks Reach Apogee
So who bailed on the deal?......USVP, Greylock, Sequoia, Vitesse and InCubic!

Overdue
redface
50%
50%
redface,
User Rank: Light Beer
12/5/2012 | 3:06:58 AM
re: ASIP, T-Networks Reach Apogee
Deauxfaux,

Very insightful observation. Thanks.

Fiber optics business is still brutal.
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
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.
LRTV Interviews
AT&T's Hubbard on Intersection of SD-WAN & MPLS

6|15|17   |     |   (0) comments


Rick Hubbard, SVP of Network Product Management for AT&T Business Solutions, discusses how AT&T's approach to SD-WAN fits in with its overall virtualization strategy, explains how SD-WAN can improve enterprise customers' use of the cloud and addresses the intersection of SD-WAN and MPLS.
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 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.