Optical components

Finisar Goes Vertical for Tunables

Finisar Corp. (Nasdaq: FNSR) plans to acquire the rest of optical components vendor Ignis ASA in a deal worth NOK425 million (US$76 million), the companies announced Tuesday.

Finisar took an 11 percent stake in Ignis last year, and during the past two days it's upped that stake to 32.6 percent. Finisar is now bidding to own the rest. The $76 million price tag would imply a worth of about $113 million for all of Ignis.

The key piece Finisar is acquiring is a tunable laser designed by Syntune, which Ignis acquired in 2009. Ignis also offers splitters -- a useful piece of passive optical networks (PONs) -- and arrayed waveguides. Finally, Ignis sells transceiver modules, giving it some overlap with Finisar's main product lines.

Why this matters
Finisar is essentially bringing its tunable XFP components in-house, as its biggest rivals have done. JDSU (Nasdaq: JDSU; Toronto: JDU) and Oclaro Inc. (Nasdaq: OCLR) make their own tunable lasers and modulators, for example -- as does Opnext Inc. (Nasdaq: OPXT), which designed its tunable laser specifically for the tunable XFP module. It's been assumed that Finisar's module uses Ignis's tunable laser, garnered through the 2009 acquisition of Syntune.

Ignis's tunable lasers would also go into Finisar's 300-pin transceivers, and other parts would be used to create new 40Gbit/s and 100Gbit/s products, according to Finisar's press release.

For more
See below for the latest on tunable XFPs, including our recent report, and a bit of recent Finisar history.

— Craig Matsumoto, West Coast Editor, Light Reading

^Eagle^ 12/5/2012 | 5:09:43 PM
re: Finisar Goes Vertical for Tunables

to Steve

I read the presentation you linked to.  Thanks.  Yes, given that information, could be either the chirp managed direct modulation of the Syntune laser as per the paper referenced in the slide pack (although this would require some other interesting elements in the package to make the chirp managed solution work across the tuning range) or it could be a tunable with a MZI integrated as part of the tunable laser chip.  Clearly based on the presentation, the Syntune Ignis team were working on a modulator to be integrated with the tunable.

So, this then leads to a different question.  Who still needs a tunable transmitter strategy for continued growth?  Oclaro has one, Opnext evidently now has one, JDSU has one, Finisar has one, Emcore has one (probably an external cavity laser co-packaged with a modulator, supplier unknown / unannounced).

Who else needs a solution in this space to compete?  


^Eagle^ 12/5/2012 | 5:09:43 PM
re: Finisar Goes Vertical for Tunables

Wow, the dance gets more interesting.

that sure cleared up the question of which tunable Finisar was using in it's tunable xfp.  

now the question is which modulator they are using.  As Criag's article mentioned, Opnext developed their own.  JDSU did their own.  Oclaro does their own modulator as well.  

Santur reportedly has one, but not sure if Santur is supplying it to customers yet or not.  I doubt that Oclaro (Bookham / Nortel) is selling their modulator as a stand alone die for Finisar to package.  I think OKI has a modulator as well.  Gigoptix also has one.  and I think a couple of start ups.  I would also guess that Ignis / Syntune were working on a MZI as well, but I have not heard anything on status.  I would think that if they had one, there might have been a press release.  My guess is that Finisar is getting the modulator from an external vendor like they were getting the tunable laser from.  

So, any one have a good guess as to which modulator Finisar are using? 

also, regards the "dance getting more interesting", would this move of Finisar's prompt others to do additional M&A to bulk up on key technologies?  Even if it were not related to tunable lasers or modulators for tunable xfp.  Are there other key components out there that would be prone to being absorbed into bigger companies in the near term?  

What is next in the consolidation arena?


Steve0616 12/5/2012 | 5:09:43 PM
re: Finisar Goes Vertical for Tunables

If Finisar going a different route with direct modulation as ref'd here?  (See slides 5&6)



Steve0616 12/5/2012 | 5:09:34 PM
re: Finisar Goes Vertical for Tunables

It looks like a really crowded field already. Most of the major players, outside of possibly Oplink and Sumitomo, have  announced their versions of the t-xfp, along with several smaller vendors. Either its going to be a very large market or these vendors are doing everything possible to keep the competition from syphoning off any more business away from their customers.

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