VoIP Systems

Genband Splashes Out for BayPackets

With two acquisitions in 12 months, Genband Inc. is signaling that it doesn't intend to stay small forever. Today the former one-product wonder announced it is acquiring privately-held BayPackets Inc. for an undisclosed sum.

BayPackets, founded in 2000, is headquartered in Fremont, Calif. with facilities in New Delhi, India. The company has 91 employees, 69 of which are in India. It had raised $57.8 million in venture backing during its lifetime as an independent company.

BayPackets’ founder Sanjeev Chawla will become Genband's CTO and board member Alex Guira will join Genband's board. The rest of the BayPackets management team haven't as of yet announced their new jobs or departure dates.

BayPackets, known as a scrappy service delivery platform competitor, helped run a host of IP-based applications for wireless carriers, wireline operators, and broadband providers. The acquisition gives Genband, which started as a media gateway vendor, a couple more clubs for its IMS golf bag –- essentially giving it everything except a session border controller for next generation voice networks.

From Heavy Reading's IMS report last year, here's a summary of BayPackets' value to Genband, which wants to broaden its reach in IMS deployments:

The company has a wide set of partners, including strategic investors Intel and Lucent. Lucent signed a resale agreement with BayPackets in May under which Lucent will resell BayPackets SDPs and business VOIP applications as part of its own IMS solution. Other partners include IBM, Siemens, and Tekelec. BayPackets' Parlay/OSA gateway can be deployed in IBM BladeCenters and Sun Netra servers, among other platforms.

Bay sees its strengths as its ability to handle multiple protocols (SIP, Camel, IN, etc.), its highly scaleable servers, and its integration into a back-office environment.

With BayPackets in its bag, Genband will be able to sell wireless carriers service delivery platform-powered applications like prepaid and unified messaging solutions. For cable operators, the BayPackets deal will help Genband pursue the burgeoning cable VOIP market, which it first took aim at earlier this year with the acquisition of Menlo Park, Calif. softswitch vendor Syndeo Corp.

With the assets of Syndeo Corp. under their belts, Genband officials introduced two new IMS architecture and multimedia products this past spring, including the C2 signaling controller and S4 applications server. (See Genband on the Run.)

Thanks in part to its Syndeo acquisition, Genband now counts RCN Corp. , Canadian MSO Vidéotron Telecom Ltd. , and large Spanish MSO Cabovisão S.A. as prime cable customers. It also claims some larger, undisclosed U.S. MSOs, enabling its voice products to serve about 500,000 cable telephony subscribers worldwide.

Genband estimates its revenues to be about $33 million this year, growing to about $60 million next year.

Now Genband says it will put the BayPacket's suite of applications into a product called the M5 Multimedia Applications Server, which will give it signaling and services support across TDM and VOIP networks.

"This acquisition fundamentally changes us into a multi-product company with strong international traction," says Genband CEO Charlie Vogt. "This is a big step toward our corporate goals and will position us nicely as a strategic supplier of IMS solutions."

And, even though Genband's acquisitions are helping it broaden out, its original product, the G6 Universal Media Gateway, is getting a boost inside Verizon Communications Inc. (NYSE: VZ) as of late. The carrier this week confirmed that Alcatel (NYSE: ALA; Paris: CGEP:PA), Verizon's primary GPON technology supplier, is reselling the G6 as part of its voice integration solution. (See Alcatel Joins Verizon PON Party.)

In addition to Verizon, Genband's technology and its acquisitions have added several new names to its customer roster including Deutsche Telekom AG (NYSE: DT), SoftBank BB Corp. , and the long distance network of AT&T Inc. (NYSE: T).

— Phil Harvey, News Editor, Light Reading

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mu-law 12/5/2012 | 3:42:01 AM
re: Genband Splashes Out for BayPackets "It's just a media gateway. Why would you need to build it with exotic proprietary hardware when it's just TI DSPs, an Ethernet interface, and a circuit interface? It's supposed to be boring."

Yes, this is the point. Put another way, Nuera is not boring enough... because they use off the shelf cPCI hardware, they are stuck with somebody else's limitations, product lifecycles, markups, etc. Being owned by AC might help some of this, if only they weren't AC.

There are a number of vendors who have taken this approach, and despite their stubborn defiance of history, they end up with the same result.

The vendors who are most succesful in the MG market have purpose-built products that are even better at being boring, and in doing also have better scale than the Nuera / AC products.

Im suggesting that the gateway market is in fact too competitive to tolerate the naive approach of replacing silkscreening with hardware engineering.
Scott Raynovich 12/5/2012 | 3:41:44 AM
re: Genband Splashes Out for BayPackets >Uhmm, didn't the VCs do just fine with VG?

it depends on how much they put in. The VCs put in more than $600M, if you include the convertible debt. Also, not sure what the lockup restrictions are, but it's unlikely they can sell yet anyway.


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