Alcatel Seals C&W Deal
Alcatel announced today that it's deploying 200 to 250 nodes for C&W during the next two to three years. C&W's NGN is comparable to the BT Group plc (NYSE: BT; London: BTA) 21CN rollout, not just for the preponderance of capital letters, but because they both involve building a new, unified network for handling traffic. (See C&W Picks Alcatel and Optus Launches 3G.)
Alcatel was considered a strong possibility for the role a year ago, when initial winner Tellabs backed down from the £190 million (US$365 million) project. The companies said at the time that the C&W plans didn't mesh with the Tellabs 8800 roadmap.
That doesn't mean Alcatel is a desperation alternative. Light Reading reported a year ago that C&W's change of heart had more to do with embracing Multiprotocol Label Switching (MPLS), turning away from an SDH-based multiservice model that would have favored Tellabs. (See Tellabs, C&W Part Ways.)
It's hard to gauge Alcatel's chunk of the deal, since prices will depend on how big each node is, but one analyst requesting anonymity says a good first guess would be $75 million or even $100 million. "It doesn't make or break them, but it obviously gives them more momentum," the analyst says.
Alcatel and C&W each did not return a call for comment.
— Craig Matsumoto, Senior Editor, Light Reading