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Optical/IP

Bytemobile to Take ProQuent?

CANNES, France –- Data-services platform startup ProQuent Systems Corp. has struck a reseller agreement with network-optimization vendor Bytemobile Inc., amid speculation it is to be acquired by its new partner.

ProQuent last year changed its sales game plan in an effort to drive revenues, moving from a direct sales approach to a channel strategy. The company has previously talked up an unannounced win at a U.K. carrier as proof of such success (see ProQuent Ain't Spent).

The mystery U.K. win was the result of a partnership between ProQuent and Bytemobile, according to ProQuent CTO Tom Hamilton. “Bytemobile is reselling our equipment,” says Hamilton.

Scuttlebutt in Cannes suggests Bytemobile is set to acquire ProQuent following the successful partnership. A number of sources have confirmed that talks are in progress.

Both parties remain tight-lipped. “I can’t confirm or deny it,” says Hamilton. Bytemobile declined to comment.

Bytemobile certainly has the resources for such a deal. The company has raised a total of $57 million in VC funding since its inception in July 2000, with a recent round of $12 million intended for potential acquisition activity. “If we see an inorganic opportunity to grow we have the bank to do it,” says Steve Livingston, executive VP of worldwide sales and marketing.

— Justin Springham, Senior Editor, Europe, Unstrung

bkuch 12/5/2012 | 3:26:24 AM
re: Bytemobile to Take ProQuent? What was the price? Cheap?
wirelessWiz 12/5/2012 | 3:26:10 AM
re: Bytemobile to Take ProQuent? Bytemobile is dumping its loser ISN (Information Services Node ) in favor of ProQuent?s MSSP, which hasn?t won that many clients, either.

Bytemobile is probably feeling that there isn't much money for data optimization in EV-DO/UMTS and thus it is changing strategy to application charging.
eurichardson 12/5/2012 | 3:26:01 AM
re: Bytemobile to Take ProQuent?
If this is true, it will be great news for ProQuent.

Based on the information on their website, Bytemobile appears to be an extremely successful company. In the 4 years since they were incorporated, Bytemobile has built up an impressive list of customers, including some of the biggest names in wireless - Vodafone, Sprint, Cingular, NTT DoCoMo, Nextel, Orange, T-Mobile. Very impressive.
MicrowavedBrain 12/5/2012 | 3:26:00 AM
re: Bytemobile to Take ProQuent? Erm, seeing that they have funding from Ericsson, Orange Ventures (and if I recall correctly Vodafone Ventures too) it's not that surprising that they have been successful.

What is more interesting is that despite making some good early successes specifically in the UK market, they didn't manage to play the strategic account game so well internationally and the other big player in this space, Flash Networks (who have funding from T-Ventures), managed to make a number of good wins taking significant accounts even within the groups that chose Bytemobile.

All the other early players in this market such as Bluekite, Broadcloud and Speedwise all failed to make any serious traction and have disappeared or been bought. So all in all, there are 2 players in this market and due to the fact both the leaders are going in very different directions, it looks like there's not much $$$ to be had in the carrier IP optimization market.

Personally, I think that WiFi and in a few years WiMax will make the GPRS/3G networks the network of choice for ringtones and icons and little else, so moving out of the data layer optimization market is "a good thing".

On a totally different note, does anyone know if the "mobile" in Bytemobile is supposed to be pronounced more like Batmobile? or like "mobile" in Mobile Phone?
blephen 12/5/2012 | 3:25:59 AM
re: Bytemobile to Take ProQuent? On 2/20/2005 MicrowaveBrain posted this profound query:

"On a totally different note, does anyone know if the "mobile" in Bytemobile is supposed to be pronounced more like Batmobile? or like "mobile" in Mobile Phone?"

It's prounounced moble.

paradigm_shift 12/5/2012 | 3:25:58 AM
re: Bytemobile to Take ProQuent? The posts on this topic seem to be somewhat polar. What you can see from their website is a list of Vodaphone operators that many vendors would die for - they list 14 operators with Vodaphone alone - so a move into ProQuent type business makes a lot of sense. And it is certainly true the competing vendors have died (or are dying) and so don't have the $$$ to even think about such a bold move.

On the name it is unknown how it should be pronounced and either way sounds bad - but it certainly hasn't stopped them it seems!
MicrowavedBrain 12/5/2012 | 3:25:33 AM
re: Bytemobile to Take ProQuent? it wasn't supposed to be polar, Bytemobile is a company that has done everything right, from marketing itself around its academic credentials, getting people like Arun Sarin on the board of directors (he was a big cheese at Verizon and now CEO of Vodafone Global) raising money from the most important telecoms strategic investors, recruiting the right people to do the initial sales penetration and raising double digit rounds of funding in major slump years. They have done it by the book, executed well and still the market is crummy.

I was merely observing that even with "group" recommendation behind you, within Europe at least, the fact that an operator wears a particular logo, doesn't mean that it will necessary abide group decisions. For competitors this means that if you play group politics well enough you can get some of the larger group companies to disobey group rulings and get some major account traction.
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