TMCnet Feature
March 01, 2012

NewNet Takes the Road Less Traveled

By Paula Bernier, Executive Editor, TMC

Sometimes it makes sense to zig when everybody else zags.

Steve Jobs (News - Alert) made Apple the most valuable company in the world by blazing his own trail.

Martha Stewart built a media empire around domestic pursuits at a time in which homemaking was considered by many as passé.

And now NewNet Communication Technologies is pushing WiMAX and attacking niche communications applications while other vendors are pushing solutions based on more popular technologies like LTE (News - Alert) in already-crowded marketplaces. The NewNet strategy also involves buying other companies, or their assets, to enter or expand in new market spaces; and internal efficiencies to keep its own company overhead low even new assets are added to the portfolio.

NewNet has a 20-year history. It started life selling SS7 stacks. It then pioneered a short message service center. In the mid 1990s ADC bought the business and later divested it, selling it to a company called SS8 (News - Alert). It was later sold again – this time to private equity firm Skyview Capital, which remains the current owner of what we know today as NewNet.

In 2009 Skyview brought in new management at NewNet to pursue the strategy around growth through acquisition and a plan to target niche applications, says Prasad Kallur, executive vice president of Strategy at NewNet.

To date, NewNet has done three acquisitions as part of that effort. It bought UTStarcom’s (News - Alert) packet data processing for CDMA network business, its IP voice messaging line, and its TraxcomSecure payments gateway point-of-sale solution. It snapped up 3ple-Media, BV of the Netherlands, whose Mercury platform enables carriers to implement cost-effective, media-rich, campaigns such as live media broadcast, mobile advertising, streaming video and premium content subscription services. And, most recently, it got its hands on the WiMAX assets of Nokia (News - Alert) Siemens Networks and the related customer base.

While these are all businesses that nobody else wanted – at least not as badly as NewNet did – Kallur says NewNet believes it can be successful by targeting assets with “a runway”; focusing on niche opportunities; and supporting all of the above with an efficient internal organizational structure that relies on common HR, R&D and other resources to support all company efforts.

Edited by Jennifer Russell
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