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Cable modem/CMTS

Aurora Networks Buys Into Docsis, Cable IPTV

Optical transport supplier Aurora Networks Inc. is expanding its horizons and entering the cable modem termination system (CMTS) and edge QAM business after acquiring GoBackTV Inc.

The acquisition, the first for the eleven-year-old company, comes about six months after Aurora hired Scott Weinstein as VP of new business development. At the time, Aurora said it brought him on to identify growth opportunities, including potential acquisitions. (See Aurora Adds VP .)

And there may be more deals to come, as Aurora noted Monday that it's "primed to make additional acquisitions to realize incremental growth."

Aurora didn't disclose the purchase price, but the privately held company expects to integrate Menlo Park, Calif.-based GoBackTV within two months.

GoBackTV's roots trace back to Com21 Inc., a cable modem and CMTS vendor that went bankrupt in 2003. GoBackTV purchased Com21's digital video assets that same year.

Why this matters
It's a small acquisition, but the buy will help Aurora expand beyond its optical transport specialty, led by a "fiber deep" architecture that eliminates powered amplifiers and creates new capacity by greatly reducing the number of homes served by a node. Aurora's also been active in the Radio Frequency Over Glass (RFoG) technology market. (See Videotron Plants 'Fiber Deep' .)

In addition to getting its mitts on GoBackTV's CMTSs and edge QAMs, Aurora will also acquire the company's platform for IPTV, which has been getting some traction with Tier 2/3 operators in the U.S. and in Europe. GoBackTV has been pitching MSOs on a "drop-in" IPTV system that uses a mix of CMTS and edge QAM gear, and Docsis 2.0 cable modems. A+ Group of Denmark and RTEC Communications of Ohio were among the initial operators to deploy it.

Aurora claims to have 20 consecutive quarters of profitability. It hasn't published financials, but its annual revenues are believed to be in the neighborhood of $150 million.

For more
Read more about GoBackTV and Aurora Networks:

— Jeff Baumgartner, Site Editor, Light Reading Cable

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