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Optical/IP

Meru Has New Guru

Wireless LAN startup Meru Networks Inc. has appointed an ex-Proxim executive, Ihab Abu-Hakima, as its new CEO.

In the midst of a huge shakeout in the centralized wireless LAN business, Abu-Hakima says that his task is to build up Meru's business while maintaining "a sharper focus on some of the [technology] areas the company has already defined."

Meru currently offers a wireless LAN "controller" that can be twinned with its dedicated access points to support VOIP and multimedia implementations for enterprise customers. Meru's special power is that its system treats all of the wireless nodes as one giant access point, a feature intended to speed up handoffs between APs (see Meru Grabs $17M).

Naturally, Abu-Hakima says that Cisco Systems Inc.'s (Nasdaq: CSCO) planned acquisition of Meru rival Airespace Inc. is a good thing for the industry.

"It makes it much more exciting in a positive way," he says. "It validates the market." [Ed. note: You knew that was coming, right?]

To fund the future plans, Abu-Hakima says that Meru will be working on raising a new round of venture capital money. The company has so far raised $30 million (see Meru Takes Flight).

The company also will soon announce some new additions to its WiFi lineup.

— Dan Jones, Site Editor, Unstrung

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