Aurora Gets Some New Blood

12:40 PM -- Private equity firm TA Associates has taken an undisclosed minority stake in Aurora Networks Inc. , a move that likely dispels the notion that the cable optical and Radio Frequency Over Glass (RFoG) vendor will pursue an initial public offering any time soon.

TA Associates secured the stake via a secondary purchase from Aurora's existing shareholders, which include Fuse Capital, Sprout Group , and Castile Ventures . (See Private Equity Firm Buys Into Aurora.)

So far, Aurora, a maker of optical transmitters, nodes, and Ethernet gear, hasn't had to pursue an exit -- either through the aforementioned IPO route or an acquisition. Another RFoG player, Alloptic Inc. , took its exit earlier this year when Communications Test Design Inc. (CTDI) stepped in to buy it. (See CTDI Acquires More Access Assets.)

The 10-year-old private company has done well on its own and at least claims to be profitable. It doesn't release financial figures, but its annual revenues are believed to be in the neighborhood of $150 million, with just a small fraction of that coming from the emerging, but still tiny, RFoG market.

Cable cell backhaul offers Aurora another growth path, but today most of its revenues come by way of "Fiber Deep" architectures that call for operators to eliminate the amplifiers and result in access networks that serve about 125 homes off each node. More traditional hybrid fiber/coax (HFC) networks, in comparison, use about four amps and serve 500 to 1,000 homes per node. (See Costs Could Keep RFoG a Niche Player .)

— Jeff Baumgartner, Site Editor, Light Reading Cable

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