FIBER OPTICS INDUSTRY REPORT

Tyndall/IEEE awards go to Desurvire/Payne

Cosponsored by the Optical Society of America (OSA; Washington, D.C.) and the IEEE Lasers and Electro-Optics Society (New York, NY), the 2007 John Tyndall Award-which recognizes an individual who has made pioneering, highly significant, or continuing technical or leadership contributions to fiber-optics technology-was awarded to Emmanuel Desurvire for his early explanation of the theoretical and physical understanding of erbium-doped fiber amplifiers.

In addition, the IEEE Lasers and Electro-Optics Society named David Payne as the recipient of its 2007 Photonics Award, recognizing his pioneering contributions to the development and commercialization of optical-fiber-based technologies for communications, sensors, and high-power applications. The award recognizes outstanding achievements in photonics.

Enablence acquires Albis, gets funding

Fiber-to-the-home (FTTH) transceiver developer Enablence Technologies (Ottawa, ON, Canada) signed an agreement to acquire all the outstanding shares of Albis Optoelectronics (Rüschlikon, Switzerland), a supplier of photodiodes for the datacom and FTTH markets.

“This transaction will provide Enablence with a portfolio of leading-edge photodiode product lines, a diversified worldwide customer base, a fab capable of shipping 10 million chips per year, and a presence in the European marketplace,” said Arvind Chhatbar, Enablence CEO.

Enablence also completed a private placement of 25 million common shares at 60 cents per share, for gross proceeds of $15 million. The proceeds will be used to expand product lines, pursue new opportunities in the FTTH market, and for general working capital.

Optium to pay $35 million for Kailight Photonics

Consolidation continues in the optical components market. Optium (Horsham, PA), a supplier of optical subsystems for the telecom and cable TV industries, has entered into a definitive agreement to acquire Kailight Photonics (Dallas, TX), a privately held provider of 40 Gbit/s optical transmission products. Optium will pay $35 million in cash for Kailight.

According to the companies, Kailight’s 40 Gbit/s technology is expected to be a key driver in the transition from custom line-card solutions to module-based solutions, while providing a cost-effective path for customers to migrate to next-generation modulation formats. Kailight transceivers have been qualified with several system integrators and have begun shipping in preproduction quantities.

Finisar to acquire AZNA and Kodeos

To broaden its communication product lines by adding key technologies involving advanced modulation and electronic signal processing for extending the reach and tunability of transceivers and transponders, Finisar (Sunnyvale, CA) has entered into agreements to acquire the outstanding equity interests in AZNA (Wilmington, MA) and Kodeos Communications (South Plainfield, NJ).

By incorporating AZNA’s key technologies across Finisar’s existing broad line of products, we believe we will be able to create a competitive advantage in terms of the cost, reach, and performance of our products for both telecom and datacom applications,” said Jerry Rawls, Finisar’s chairman of the board, president, and CEO.

Avanex divests fabs

Optical-networks equipment provider Avanex (Fremont, CA) entered into a definitive agreement to sell a 90% interest in its French subsidiary, Avanex France (Paris, France), including its indium phosphide and gallium arsenide semiconductor fabs, to Global Research Company and to the current management of Avanex France. Avanex also realized proceeds of $20 million in a private placement of common stock. The divested business includes the laser, terrestrial, and submarine pump, and fiber-Bragg-grating product lines. Avanex will maintain 20 employees in France focused on transmission products.

Also in the news . . .

OE Solutions (Gwangju, Korea), a supplier of optoelectronic transceiver solutions for wireless and wireline optical communications, closed a $4.3 million Series C round of funding, bringing its total funding to $16 million. . . . According to data from independent analyst firm the Dell’Oro Group (Redwood City, CA), Infinera (Sunnyvale, CA) led the worldwide market in calendar 2006 with a 34.7% global market share for shipments of 10 Gbit/s long-haul dense-wavelength-division-multiplexing systems. . . . Xponent Photonics (Monrovia, CA), a manufacturer of surface-mount photonic components for the communications market, secured $23 million in Series 3 funding. . . . In partnership with Siemens and Eindhoven University of Technology, optical networking subsystems manufacturer CoreOptics (Nuremberg, Germany, and Manchester, NH) demonstrated the first 111 Gbit/s transmission over 2400 km of fiber. . . . NeoPhotonics (San Jose, CA) is ramping its transceiver production capacity in Shenzhen, China, to 250,000 units per month.

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