2007 Top Ten: Optical Stories

Optical networking is back and better than ever, and you don't have to go far to see proof of its resurgence. In fact, you only need travel one more paragraph down this page to bask in the greatness of our top ten biggest optical networking stories of 2007:

10. Optical Dominates Leading Lights
Two of the 10 biggest Leading Lights awards this year honored optical networking pioneers. Fujitsu Network Communications Inc. took home the Best New Product award for its Flashwave 9500 product -- a single box that offers Sonet, optical switching, Ethernet transport, and a cup holder (just kidding about the cup holder). Infinera Corp. (Nasdaq: INFN)'s Jagdeep Singh was named Person of the Year by our readers with a landslide 53 percent of the vote. Yes, optical's return to relevance in 2007 will continue into 2008, at least until we finally see all that network demand we were promised back in 1999. (See LR Names 2007 Leading Lights Winners.)

9. ECI Taken Out
After 18 months on the block, ECI Telecom Ltd. finally found a buyer -- Swarth Investments LLC -- and went private in a $1.2 billion deal in June. Swarth's $10-per-share bid was 9.4 percent higher than ECI's stock value at the time, but analysts still weren't satisfied. George Notter of Jefferies & Company Inc. wrote at the time that $11 per share "more accurately reflects, albeit conservatively, the intrinsic value in the business." But Swarth's bid was the first formal proposal ECI got, so apparently most companies found it too ugly to ask for a dance. (See ECI Bought Out in $1.2B Deal, No New Bidders for ECI, ECI On Target as Acquisition Nears, Eleven Firms Pass Over ECI, and ECI Shareholders Approve Buyout.)

8. The Money Is Back
Venture capital has returned to the optical market, and Heavy Reading analyst Sterling Perrin says it's no surprise. "There was a four-year window where there was little investment in optical, so there's a lot of pent-up need. VCs see that and are making investments for that reason," he says.

There was a great deal of follow-on funding for established optical companies to continue operations. (See OpVista Receives Funds, Alloptic Bags $24M, Ekinops Gets $20M, Transmode Bags $12M, Mintera Adds Cash, Partner, and BroadLight Bags $12M More.) Funding was also strong for optical components makers. (See AOI Raises $28M More, Intune Gets $17.75M, Gemfire Lights Up $37M, Santur Raises $26.5M, Talks IPO, and Capella Raises $20M.)

7. ADVA Shakes It Up
Since January, ADVA Optical Networking has announced four new members of its executive management team as part of a process the company hopes will help make it a "billion dollar business" sometime in the next several years. New hires include Ron Martin (chief marketing and strategy officer), Jaswir Singh (CFO), Christian Unterberger (chief sales officer), and Dr. Christoph Glingener (CTO), all of whom joined the company as Vorstand, or executive team members. In the senior ranks, only CEO Brian Protiva and COO Jurgen Hansjosten were on board at this time last year. (See ADVA Exec Shakeup Continues, Adva Appoints CMSO, ADVA Names CFO, and ADVA Appoints Sales Chief.)

Next Page: Standards Battle, Tellabs Turnover & the Return of the God Box

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candle 12/5/2012 | 3:50:27 PM
re: 2007 Top Ten: Optical Stories how did you select these stories? some seem a bit feeble to me.

did they get the most page views? or did you just pick them with a thumbtack and a blindfold?

it seems a little curious to me, because there was a whole Top 10 list about Google, but it didn't make it anywhere in your Top 10 stories.
Larry, Monkey 12/5/2012 | 3:50:27 PM
re: 2007 Top Ten: Optical Stories Sadly, we cannot share our proprietary Top 10 Selection Technique. But, you're right, it does involve thumbtacks.
And kittens.
Off_the_shelf 12/5/2012 | 2:57:00 PM
re: 2007 Top Ten: Optical Stories 100G is so hot that there is a new industry alliance that is focused just on getting there. It must be real!

If you don't believe me, just go to http://www.roadto100g.org
bollocks187 12/5/2012 | 2:56:59 PM
re: 2007 Top Ten: Optical Stories 100G BS
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