T&D World Magazine

RuggedCom Acquires WiNetworks Ltd.

RuggedCom has purchased WiNetworks Ltd., a developer of systems based on WiMAX 802.16e mobile broadband wireless technology. WiNetworks’ technology is used by large private networks and service providers to extend mobile broadband connectivity over metropolitan areas. The WiNetworks WiMAX products will form the new RuggedMAX product line and augment Ruggedcom’s growing RuggedWIRELESS portfolio.

WiNetworks is composed of a team of wireless industry veterans who were early adopters of WiMAX technology. WiNetworks was the first company in the world to develop a small form factor base station based on the IEEE 802.16e standard and have it certified by the WiMAX forum certification wave 2, including MIMO functionality. Late last year WiNetworks became the first company to have a mobile WiMAX product certified by the FCC in the 3.65 GHz frequency band in the United States. WiNetworks has 57 employees with more than half of the staff in engineering roles.

The WiNetworks product offering consists of small form factor base station variants with differing power options and are available in a choice of licensed and unlicensed bands. In addition, WiNetworks has a line of subscriber devices for fixed and mobile applications. WiNetworks offers an open end-to-end solution by providing full interoperability with several third party device manufacturers and various ASN gateway vendors. WiNetworks has developed an additional mode of products which allows for full operation without the use of an ASN gateway, thereby increasing robustness and reducing costs and complexity - ideally suited for private network users.

Under the terms of the share purchase agreement, RuggedCom will pay approximately US $9 million in cash to acquire all the shares of WiNetworks plus assume WiNetworks' debt of approximately US $5 million.

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