Vyyo Adds New CEO, Vice Chairman
LR Cable News Analysis Alan Breznick, Cable/Video Practice Leader, Light Reading 3/26/2007
Davis, also a former engineering executive at Comcast Corp. (Nasdaq: CMCSA, CMCSK) and Jones Intercable, is taking the place of Vyyo founder Davidi Gilo, who's remaining as company chairman.
Chiddix is coming to Vyyo in a part-time role after three years as chairman and CEO of OpenTV Corp. (Nasdaq: OPTV), where he will remain on the board.
Vyyo hopes the cable technologists will boost the firm's credibility in the clubby MSO world and boost its stock price. Vyyo recently landed Singapore MSO StarHub as the first major customer for its 3GHz overlay technology. (See StarHub Goes Out-of-Band With Vyyo.)
"There's no secret that the cable industry is under bandwidth pressure," Chiddix says. "The bandwidth pressures are growing, and the focus on business services is growing."
"We can keep chipping away at incremental things," Davis says. But new cable offerings like business services, high-definition TV channels, and video file-sharing and downloads are driving bandwidth to "a degree we've never seen before," he notes.
The two new hires come just several days after Janco Partners Inc. , a Denver-based investment house, launched coverage of Vyyo with a Buy rating and a high price target of $15 per share. In one day, the company's shares, which had been trading around $5, leaped 26 percent to $6.30.
Vyyo's additions of Davis and Chiddix also comes amid much market buzz about the company's prospects for a contract award from a major U.S. cable operator.
In a report issued today, Alan Bezoza, a senior research analyst with Oppenheimer & Co., said Vyyo is now shipping its 3GHz systems to two Cox Communications Inc. markets and that "further traction" with Cox could come next quarter. Bezoza also said Vyyo is "in active dialog with at least three [other] domestic cable operators, including Comcast."
Likewise, Janco analyst Cameron Cooke noted last week that Cox has been testing Vyyo's UltraBand bandwidth expansion system for the past year.
Bezoza predicts Vyyo's revenues will triple to $25 million this year while its net loss will narrow to $23.8 million. Cooke projects that Vyyo's revenues will more than quadruple to $38.9 million this year and its net loss fall to $23.7 million.
The two new Vyyo officials declined comment on the MSO trials. But they confirmed that they're working on several right now. "Suffice it to say we're very optimistic," Chiddix said.
— Alan Breznick, Site Editor, Cable Digital News