Cisco Systems announced that it has closed on the acquisition of Starent, which makes mobile infrastructure solutions for service providers. Starent now becomes a key part of Cisco's new Mobile Internet Technology Group. The announcement comes a day after U.S. regulators gave their approval to the purchase.
Cisco Systems has completed its $2.9 billion acquisition of mobile
infrastructure vendor Starent Networks, which will become a key part of
Cisco's new Mobile Internet Technology Group.
Cisco announced the completion of the deal Dec. 18, a day after the
Department of Justice and Federal Trade Commission gave their OK to the
acquisition, and a week after Starent shareholders gave their approval
Cisco officials see Starent as a key building block as they look to
gain traction in the rapidly growing mobile Internet space. Cisco is
predicting that global mobile data traffic will more than double every
year through 2013, fueled by the rapid sales of Web-connected
smartphones and other devices.
The growth is putting demand on service providers, who are looking
to upgrade their infrastructure to meeting the increasing demand,
according to Cisco.
Starent's products offer service providers everything from core
network capabilities to services to the ability to manage connections
between a mobile operator's network to any 2.5G, 3G and 4G radio
network. They also offer access through a number of standards, such as
WiMax and CDMA2000.
Starent President and CEO Ashraf Daho will now become senior vice
president and general manager of the new Mobile Internet Technology
Group, according to Cisco.
Cisco, which has been on a buying spree in 2009 as it looks to grow
into almost three dozen new "market adjacencies," is still waiting to
close the $3.4 billion deal for Norwegian video conferencing equipment
maker Tandberg, which will be a key part of Cisco's larger
Cisco sees the collaboration space as a $34 billion opportunity, and video will play a key role in that space as it grows.
Cisco initially offered $3 billion for Tandberg Oct. 1, about two
weeks before making the Starent bid. After a number of Tandberg
shareholders balked at the price, Cisco upped the offer to $3.4
billion, and earlier this month officials said they had gained control
of more than the desired 90 percent of Tandberg shares to move forward with the deal.