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Optical/IP

Redknee's Ready to Buy

The CEO of Redknee Inc. (Toronto TSX: RKN) says his company is ready to make acquisitions in 2008 in order to expand its business.

Redknee, which develops carrier infrastructure to enable mobile billing and payments, is looking to take out small companies that would allow it to grow in emerging markets and add to its back-end systems expertise.

Of the $25 million in cash the company has, "$10 million-plus" could be used for acquisitions, CEO Lucas Skoczkowski says. He believes the first buyout will likely be a cash-and-stock deal.

Redknee is looking at IP connect and operator-to-operator systems companies, as well as possibly adding a device and terminal management play, he says.

Redknee is riding the growth in popularity of mobile content and mobile payments, Skoczkowski says: "Subscribers are growing, transactions are growing fast, there are more types of content happening, and obviously operators are happy, so we're happy."

The company went public on AIM earlier this year, and Skoczkowski says Redknee is looking to do the same in North America soon. "Our objective is to come back to North America in 12 to 18 months."

Despite this, much of its business is outside of either London or New York. The firm has been developing mobile payments systems in Africa and the Caribbean recently, driven by what Skoczkowski calls the "substitution effect" -- mobile systems leapfrogging traditionally wired systems in countries with less than perfect infrastructure.

— Dan Jones, Site Editor, Unstrung

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