Netsocket's NFV Assets Salvaged by FTTH Vendor

After acquiring Netsocket's NFV assets, iPhotonix is launching an integrated optical access and virtualization solution.

Mitch Wagner, Executive Editor, Light Reading

March 10, 2015

3 Min Read
Netsocket's NFV Assets Salvaged by FTTH Vendor

iPhotonix, a fiber-to-the-home equipment vendor, has acquired the NFV assets of failed vitrualization specialist Netsocket in a cash and equity deal, and plans to launch a solution that adds NFV capabilities to its fixed access systems.

iPhotonix believes NetSocket 's assets complement its portfolio of GPON and Active Ethernet ONT (optical network terminal) products, iPhotonix said in a statement. (See iPhotonix Acquires Netsocket NFV Assets.)

The result will be the iPhotonix Virtual Network (iVN) platform, designed to help communications service providers offer enterprise and cloud applications quickly and easily, iPhotonix says.

iVN, which will provide performance monitoring, firewalls, end device management and other applications developed by the Netsocket team, runs on commodity hardware, with a GUI (graphical user interface) management tool that will enable CSPs to build the service templates and business rules needed for the introduction and management of services, according to iPhotonix. (See Netsocket Targets Cisco With SDN Pitch.)

The acquisition was completed March 2. The six-strong Netsocket development team will be integrated with the iPhotonix R&D team in Richardson, Texas, where the FTTH vendor has its headquarters, taking the company's total staff to 40. iPhotonix plans to hire "a few more in the coming month," iPhotonix CEO Amir Elbaz told Light Reading.

Elbaz declined to disclose the terms of the deal. Netsocket is still looking for buyers for its other assets, says the CEO, adding that he only took on a small number of Netsocket's 30 or so staff because iPhotonix only needed NFV specialists.

For more NFV-related coverage and insights, check out our dedicated NFV content channel here on Light Reading.

So which companies will be on the receiving end of the iVN pitch? Elbaz declined to identify which network operators currently use iPhotonix's products, saying that information is confidential. "We have slightly north of 50 customers, of which several are very large providers in the US, Mexico and the Middle East," Elbaz says. iPhotonix sells to the Middle East and US through partners.

The company does boast Adtran Inc. (Nasdaq: ADTN) as a partner, and it's also working with the Foxconn Electronics Inc. Interconnect Technology business on Tier 1 RFP submissions. There is some significant customer news on the horizon, though, as iPhotonix is set to announce a "major win" with Grupo Televisa, a Mexican Tier 1 provider, in a matter of weeks, Elbaz says.

iPhotonix now has five investors: iPhotonix Holdings, which is owned by a "large family office from Europe"; Israeli investment company Tedea Ltd.; and, following the acquisition, three of Netsocket's investors, namely Silver Creek Ventures , Venture Investors and Trailblazer Capital, none of which were previously investors in iPhotonix.

Netsocket went through a tumultuous life, reinventing itself more times than Snoop Dogg. The company first appeared on Light Reading's radar in 2008, when it focused on developing IP service assurance tools. It relaunched in 2013 as an SDN provider. The SDN and NFV toolset uses code originally developed by core router startup Chiaro Networks (1997-2005); former Chiaro executives founded the company. (See Is SDN Vendor Netsocket Dead? .)

— Mitch Wagner, Circle me on Google+ Follow me on TwitterVisit my LinkedIn profileFollow me on Facebook, West Coast Bureau Chief, Light Reading. Got a tip about SDN or NFV? Send it to [email protected].

About the Author(s)

Mitch Wagner

Executive Editor, Light Reading

San Diego-based Mitch Wagner is many things. As well as being "our guy" on the West Coast (of the US, not Scotland, or anywhere else with indifferent meteorological conditions), he's a husband (to his wife), dissatisfied Democrat, American (so he could be President some day), nonobservant Jew, and science fiction fan. Not necessarily in that order.

He's also one half of a special duo, along with Minnie, who is the co-habitor of the West Coast Bureau and Light Reading's primary chewer of sticks, though she is not the only one on the team who regularly munches on bark.

Wagner, whose previous positions include Editor-in-Chief at Internet Evolution and Executive Editor at InformationWeek, will be responsible for tracking and reporting on developments in Silicon Valley and other US West Coast hotspots of communications technology innovation.

Beats: Software-defined networking (SDN), network functions virtualization (NFV), IP networking, and colored foods (such as 'green rice').

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