Is Intec in Line for ADC's Billing Biz?

It's already been a hectic year for billing and mediation software player Intec Telecom Systems plc (London: ITL), and it might be about to get even busier. An industry source suggests it is about to take a giant leap into the retail billing sector with the acquisition of ADC Telecommunications Inc.'s (Nasdaq: ADCT) billing business.

The industry source, who requested anonymity, says a senior executive who has just left ADC, and the CTO at a high-profile Asian carrier, have both identified Intec as the name in the frame to buy the Singl.eView billing business being offloaded by ADC (see ADC Close to OSS Sale).

Intec has been growing like wildfire with customer wins and an acquisition in the past 12 months (see Telecom Italia Picks Intec, Intec Wins Golden Deal, Intec Scores in China, Brazil, Intec Wins With Telefónica Móviles, and Intec Snaps Up Digiquant). In the past six months alone Intec has won 42 new contracts, including 38 with new customers, taking its total carrier user base to 400.

Today the software and services firm announced half-year results that reflected that growth, with revenues of £31.4 million (US$55.6 million), up by 41 percent compared with a year earlier, and a smaller pre-tax loss of £1 million ($1.77 million), compared with £2.3 million ($4.1 million) a year ago.

And while the firm's share price closed down by 2 percent today on the London Stock Exchange, at £60.50 (valuing the company at about £130 million), that's a far cry from the £16.12 of exactly one year ago.

Intec's executive chairman Mike Frayne says the company has a policy not to comment on speculation, and describes the rumor as "unhelpful." But he says Intec is looking at "a broad range of possibilities," with well publicized strategy to grow via acquisitions as well as through organic growth. "There are lots of OSS companies out there that need a good home. The challenge is to sift through them and find those that provide the right fit."

And as Frayne was talking to Light Reading, Intec's CEO Kevin Adams was telling Reuters that "there are a couple of opportunities we are reasonably seriously engaged in," where Intec has "done due diligence."

So would such a move make sense for Intec? Elisabeth Rainge, director of OSS and billing at IDC, says it certainly wouldn't be a surprise if Intec made this move. "Intec has been one of the consolidators in the sector, and this acquisition would help to diversify its revenue stream, which would be a positive step. That would add to its positions in the wholesale [interconnect] and mediation sectors, and give it a more complete story."

ADC declined to comment.

— Ray Le Maistre, International Editor, Boardwatch

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