Monday, July 31, 2023

Lumen launches Network-as-a-Service (NaaS)

 Lumen Technologies launched its flagship capability on its Network-as-a-Service (NaaS) platform, offering customers “radical flexibility in how they buy, use, and manage networking services.”

The Lumen NaaS platform offers a fully digital consumption model allowing customers touse a digital portal or APIs (Application Program Interface) to order and manage services. The first and flagship service on the NaaS platform is Lumen Internet On-Demand, which enables:

  • dedicated connection to one of the largest, most connected and secure networks in the world 
  • Ability to scale capacity in minutes 
  • Internet speeds from 100 Mbps to 10 Gbps
  • A consumption-based billing model; pay only for the time services are active, starting at hourly rates 
  • Real-time visibility into service performance and network usage
  • Quick enablement of new capabilities

Lumen plans to expand its NaaS over time to include security services, such as DDoS (Distributed Denial of Service), SASE (Secure Access Service Edge), and Edge services.  In addition, Lumen NaaS will leverage a broad digital ecosystem of partners – including data center, cloud, technology, and managed service providers. Digital Realty is one of the first third-party data center providers to join the Lumen Network-as-a-Service Alliance Partner program.

"We have been preparing for this moment for a long time, building a world-class telecom network with state-of-the-art fiber, broad coverage and unsurpassed route diversity and scalability," said Kate Johnson, Lumen CEO. "Lumen's Network-as-a-Service offering takes the next step to deliver on our customers' networking dreams: the ability to fire up any port, with any service, at any time. It's your network, your way."

"Lumen is putting the customer at the center of our Network-as-a-Service platform, creating a cloud-like experience for buying, consuming, and managing our network services," said Andrew Dugan, Lumen CTO. "Businesses are looking for a dynamic, dedicated internet connection, but they want it from a reliable and flexible network. Unlike some Network-as-a-Service players, Lumen can deliver on this promise because we own and manage our network."  

"Lumen plays an important role in helping content providers move video content to AWS," said Evan Statton, Sr. Principal Architect in M&E at AWS. For example, Fox Sports was able to bring its live sports content to AWS by using an on-demand connection aligned with Lumen's Network-as-a-Service platform. We look forward to continued work with Lumen to help AWS customers achieve their live cloud production goals."

Arista posts record Q2 revenue and profits

Arista Networks reported record revenue of $1.459 billion for Q2 2023, an increase of 8.0% compared to the first quarter of 2023, and an increase of 38.7% from the second quarter of 2022. Non-GAAP net income amounted to $501.2 million, or $1.58 per diluted share, compared to non-GAAP net income of $342.7 million, or $1.08 per diluted share in the second quarter of 2022.

“Arista again achieves record revenue and profitability for Q2 2023,” said Jayshree Ullal, President and CEO of Arista Networks. “Our customers now represent more than 75 million cumulative cloud networking ports.”

“Arista again achieves record revenue and profitability for Q2 2023,” said Jayshree Ullal, President and CEO of Arista Networks. “Our customers now represent more than 75 million cumulative cloud networking ports.”

BT names Allison Kirkby as next CEO, replacing Philip Jansen

BT Group plc selected Allison Kirkby as its next Chief Executive, replacing Philip Jansen as Chief Executive around the end of January 2024 at the latest.

Kirkby currently serves as President & CEO of Telia Company since early 2020.  She moved into the TMT sector in 2010, initially joining Virgin Media, and was most recently President & CEO of TDC (2018-2020), the largest telecommunications company in Denmark, and President & CEO of Tele2 AB (2015-2018) the largest challenger telecommunications company in Sweden and the Baltics.

She has been a Non-Executive Director at BT Group since 2019 and is also a Non-Executive Director and member of the Audit Committee of Brookfield Asset Management Limited.

Adam Crozier, BT Group Chairman said: “The Board is delighted to have appointed Allison as our new Chief Executive. She is a proven leader, with deep sector experience and a history of having transformed businesses. I look forward to supporting her as we drive our long-term strategy to transform BT Group, ensuring it delivers for all our stakeholders.”

BT also announced the following remuneration for Kirkby:

  • A salary of £1,100,000 per annum.
  • A cash allowance in lieu of pension of 10% of salary and other benefits in line with our Remuneration Policy.
  • An on target annual bonus of 120% of salary (with a maximum of 200%) subject to performance. Half of the annual bonus paid will be deferred into BT Group shares for a further three years with no additional performance conditions.
  • A long-term Restricted Share Plan (“RSP”) award of 200% of salary, which vests in three equal tranches three, four and five years after grant. She is required to hold all vested shares until five years after grant. Her first pro rata RSP award will be granted soon after becoming Chief Executive.

AMD to invest $400M for R&D in India

AMD plans to invest approximately $400 million investment over the next five years to expand its R&D in India.

 The planned investment includes a new 500,000-square-foot AMD campus in Bangalore, Karnataka that will serve as the company’s largest design center. The company is looking to add 3,000 new engineering roles by the end of 2028.

"From a handful of employees in 2001 to more than 6,500 employees today, AMD has grown its India footprint based on the strong foundation established by our local leadership and the highly skilled talent pool,” said Mark Papermaster, executive vice president and chief technology officer, AMD. 

Francisco Partners and TPG to privatize New Relic in $6.5B deal

Francisco Partners, a leading global investment firm that specializes in partnering with technology businesses, and TPG, a global asset management firm, agreed to acquire New Relic for $87.00 per share in cash. The all-cash transaction values New Relic at an equity valuation of approximately $6.5 billion. The purchase price represents a premium of approximately 26% to New Relic’s 30-day volume-weighted average closing price ending on July 28, 2023.

San Francisco-based New Relic offers a data observability platform that empowers engineers to get all telemetry—metrics, events, logs, and traces—paired with a full stack analysis tools.

For its most recent fiscal quarter, New Relic posted total revenue of $242.6 million, up 12% from $216.5 million one year ago. Consumption revenue was $213.9 million, up 39% year over year.

Bill Staples, CEO of New Relic, said, “New Relic has made significant progress on its consumption business transition and, together with Francisco Partners and TPG, we will have the resources and flexibility to not only complete the final chapter of this transition, but also accelerate our strategy and provide customers with a standardized data-driven practice that any company can benefit from. I am proud of all that the team at New Relic has achieved, and I thank each of our employees for executing in a dynamic market and contributing to our continued success.”

NTT announces stabilization of an electro-optic modulation-based optical frequency comb

NTT Corporation (NTT) and Tokyo Denki University have succeeded in further stabilizing the graduated frequency of an optical frequency ruler generated by modulating the intensity and phase of laser light in an electrical signal.

By using this result, it is possible to obtain a light source with a narrow linewidth whose frequency interval is 25 GHz, and it is expected to be applied to high-speed and large-capacity optical communications such as next-generation digital coherent transmission. In addition, microwaves with significantly reduced phase noise can be generated, which is expected to improve the accuracy of microwave generation and evaluation equipment.

An optical frequency comb (OFC) is an optical signal that has a comb-like emission line spectrum on the frequency axis, and is used for optical frequency measurement and precise frequency conversion from light to microwave. 

This research was published in the British scientific journal, Scientific Reports on May 30, 2023, and was presented in an invited talk at PIERS2023, an international conference on photonics, electromagnetics and information communications, on July 3.

Ceragon names Ilan Rosen as Chairman, succeeding Zohar Zisapel

Ceragon Networks named Ilan Rosen as its new Chairman of the Board, succeeding Zohar Zisapel, who sadly passed away on May 19, 2023.

Rosen has been a member of Ceragon's Board of Directors since July 2021. He currently serves as Managing Director in HarbourVest Partners LLC, a global private equity firm with more than 1,000 employees that manages approximately $100 billion worth of investments in various private equity strategies around the globe. From 1997-2012 Mr. Rosen served as Chairman of the Board of Tdsoft LTD which later merged into VocalTec. 

“I will strive to honor the legacy of Zohar Zisapel and help Ceragon reach the next stage of its evolution as an industry leader creating value in large and growing markets,” commented Mr. Rosen. “This is an exciting time for Ceragon, and I believe we have the right team in place, with significant telecommunications and technology expertise from the Board level down, to enable us to capture market share, expand market penetration and create long-term shareholder value.”

In Memoriam: Zohar Zisapel, 1949-2023

Zohar Zisapel, network entrepreneur and co-founder of the RAD Group of companies in Israel, passed away due to cancer on May 20, 2023, at the age of 74.

In 1981, Zohar and his brother Yehuda and cofounded RAD Data Communications Ltd.  Its first product was a miniature modem. The company would go on to release its first optical product a few years later, eventually adding many more networking products, and splitting into separate companies under the RAD umbrella. 

Over the years, Zohar is credited with founding, guiding and/or inspiring dozens of high-tech start-ups in Israel. 

Zisapel is also remembered for his philanthropy and for his support of his alma mater, the Technion – Israel Institute of Technology.

A YouTube tribute to the Zisapel brothers: