Tuesday, March 5, 2024

Viavi to acquire Spirent, consolidating test & measurement companies

VIAVI Solutions agreed to acquire Spirent Communications, a global provider of automated test and assurance solutions for networks, cybersecurity, and positioning, for approximately £1,005 million or $1,277 million, based on the exchange rate on March 4, 2024.

In addition, Silver Lake is making a US$400 million long-term strategic investment in Viavi in connection with the acquisition. 

Viavi said it believes that acquiring Spirent will significantly enhance its offerings in test, measurement, and assurance solutions, especially for emerging technologies like 5G and 6G. This combination is expected to deliver integrated, high-performance solutions and expand the product and service range available to both new and existing customers. Ultimately, Viavi sees this merger as a strategic move to foster product innovation and generate long-term value.

“VIAVI is proud to help enable its global customers to pursue innovation across the wide range of industries it serves,” said Oleg Khaykin, President and CEO of VIAVI. “Combining our leading communications test and measurement and optical technologies and Spirent’s high-performance testing and assurance solutions is expected to deliver enhanced product solutions and applications, accelerate growth in new markets and strengthen innovation through expanded engineering and design capabilities. Further, we are uniting two teams with a shared passion for developing compelling and cutting-edge offerings for customers and a commitment to technological excellence. We are pleased to welcome a strategic, long-term investment from Silver Lake in connection with the Acquisition. Silver Lake has an outstanding track record of supporting leading technology companies through both organic growth investments and scale acquisitions.”

“Combining with VIAVI brings together a highly complementary product offering which can be marketed globally,” said Eric Updyke, Chief Executive Officer of Spirent. “It will enable Spirent to build on the strategic progress we have made to date, with a partner that has the scale and resources to capitalize on the long-term growth opportunities ahead. The combination of VIAVI and Spirent creates a stronger business that will be better able to compete, and we are confident in the opportunities this will bring for our stakeholders.”


  • Spirent Communications, a British multinational telecommunications testing company, has a rich history dating back to its founding in 1936 as Goodliffe Electric Supplies. Over time, it evolved through various name changes, eventually adopting the name “Spirent” in 2000. The company’s headquarters are in Crawley, West Sussex, UK, while its operational headquarters are in San Jose, California, USA. Spirent is publicly listed on the London Stock Exchange and is part of the FTSE 250 Index. Under the leadership of Chairman Bill Thomas, CEO Eric Updyke, and CFO Paula Bell, Spirent specializes in automated test and assurance solutions for networks, cybersecurity, and positioning. Its product lines include lifecycle service assurance for 5G mobile networks and cellular devices, as well as network testing and security solutions. In 2022, Spirent reported revenue of $607.5 million, operating income of $129.5 million, and net income of $99.9 million . Over the years, major acquisitions by Spirent have included Consultronics, Netcom Systems, Adtech, Zarak Systems, Caw Networks, Hekimian, Telecom Analysis Systems, Global Simuation Systems, DLS, and Imperfect Networks.
  • Viavi Solutions, formerly part of JDS Uniphase Corporation, is an American network test, measurement, and assurance technology company based in Chandler, Arizona. It traces its origins to 1923, when Wandel & Goltermann began to manufacture test sets for communications.
  • In 2000, the world’s 2nd and 3rd largest T&M companies merged to form ACTERNA. In 2005, ACTERNA merged with JDS Uniphase to form JDSU.  The Agilent Network Solutions Division was later merged into the company, and in 2017, Viavi was spun out of JDSU. Additional acquisitions have included RPC Photonics, Cobham, 3Z Telecom, Expandium, Contest and others. 

Arista intros CloudVision Universal Network Observability software

Arista Networks introduced a network observability software offering merging network infrastructure performance and data from compute and server systems-of-record to deliver keen insights into application and workload performance across data center, campus, and wide area networks.

Arista’s CloudVision Universal Network Observability (CV UNO) system, which is offered as a premium feature license on Arista CloudVision, enables the automation of network, systems, and application/workload visibility, coupled with AI-driven proactive analysis and prescriptive recommendations, which significantly reduces human error, accelerates issue resolution for unforeseen events, and provides precise root cause analysis of network events and their impact on application delivery.

CV UNO consists of the following components:

  • CV UNO Sensor collects, normalizes, and curates flow/SNMP data from various sources like VMware vCenter, DANZ Monitoring Fabric, and third-party network devices and forwards them to NetDL.
  • CV UNO, enabled via a premium feature license, integrates into and enhances CloudVision’s operational and network telemetry capabilities by leveraging Machine Intelligence-based Analysis on data stored in NetDL to infer topology-aware correlations across events, changes, and anomalies, thereby accelerating root cause analysis and expediting issue resolution.
  • CV UNO Recorder Node (optional) adds packet capture, query, and packet replay capabilities to support intrusion detection, incident response, and forensic use cases.
  • CV UNO Service Node (optional) enables advanced packet processing functions, like end-to-end application latency analysis and DPI-based Application Identification and classification.
  • CV UNO Analytics Node (optional) enables distributed context-aware traffic analysis and machine learning capabilities for large-scale optimization.



Keysight and AMD stress test Mobile and Private 5G networks

 Keysight leveraged 4th generation AMD EPYC CPUs to to develop an industry first benchmarking methodology that redefines the landscape of system performance evaluation for high-speed digital designers, network equipment manufacturers, and data center operators. 

The solution tests mobile and 5G private network performance with millions of concurrent devices establishing simultaneous voice, video, and web sessions in real-world scenarios, such as smart manufacturing and smart energy grids that must connect millions of low-latency, high-bandwidth devices.

The companies say their integrated test case methodology takes into account the processing power of CPUs enabling data center operators to extract more performance from a chosen CPU and to characterize the performance across multiple vectors while adhering to bandwidth requirements.

  • Infrastructure scalability – In settings such as smart grids and smart manufacturing, smooth and reliable operation requires handling millions of concurrent devices. Traditional benchmarks frequently overlook the CPU's capacity and its capability to handle a considerably higher concurrent load as the network’s bandwidth constraints obscure this ability. This new benchmarking approach is designed to uncover the true CPU power and scalability in these environments.
  • Real-life authenticity – Mobile and 5G private networks support specialized fields like vision-based smart manufacturing, extended reality (XR) viewership, and retail workflows. Testing infrastructure for its capability to handle realistic application, voice, and video traffic is crucial. The new benchmark emphasizes replicating bulk activities with millions of devices establishing new sessions and including highly realistic scenarios like subscribers initiating voice, video, and web calls. 

Raghu Nambiar, Corporate Vice President, Data Center Ecosystems and Solutions, AMD, said: “5G mobile network operators worldwide are facing an unprecedented demand for bandwidth. This consistent growth of data traffic volume requires scalable and effective benchmarking solutions to accurately measure user experience. Our collaboration with Keysight demonstrates the ability of AMD EPYC CPUs to deliver impressive parallel processing performance to handle these high volumes of data traffic."


Verizon Business intros 5G-Wi-Fi 7 Internet gateway

Verizon Business tintroduced two new next-generation business devices, including the Verizon Business Internet Gateway -- its first Wi-Fi 7-compatible business internet gateway device for fixed wireless access (FWA) for C-Band -- as well as the tri-band 5G Business Receiver supporting 5G mmWave, C-Band, and 4G LTE. 

The new gateway’s Wi-Fi 7 compatibility incorporates the advantages of the latest wireless standard, including more bandwidth, accelerated connectivity, greater reliability, responsiveness that approaches wired connectivity, and robust security and privacy.

In addition to Wi-Fi 7 compatibility, the Business Internet Gateway will offer support for private networks, NSA and SA, network slicing and more. Other features include the following:

  • DL 4x4 MIMO for all LTE & NR Bands
  • 4 Carrier Aggregation Supported on NR Bands to support higher DL throughput
  • 4 SMA Ports for External Antennas
  • 2.5Gbps WAN Port
  • Accessories ecosystem including battery backup, wall mount and external antenna mounting hardware

“Verizon Business Internet Gateway’s Wi-Fi 7 compatibility is a major development for the industry, but this device’s broader strength is its ability to provide faster, more stable service for our business customers,” said Vijay Paulrajan,Vice President, Devices and Device Services, Verizon Business. “We designed the router with external antenna support for added flexibility in challenging signal locations in buildings. In addition there is a robust accessory ecosystem including a battery backup for power outage situations.”



Vantage secures funding for data center project in Taiwan

Vantage Data Centers secured a US$64 million (approximately NT$2 billion) loan from CTBC Bank and Cathay United Bank to fund the development of the company’s first data center in Taipei, Taiwan (TPE11). 

The Taiwan campus, which was first announced last December, is the eighth developing or operational campus in Vantage’s APAC portfolio. Currently under development and expected to open mid-2024, TPE11 will deliver 16MW of IT capacity across a 215,000 square foot (20,000 square meters) facility. Once completed, the campus will serve hyperscalers, cloud providers and large enterprises as the region becomes a major digital infrastructure hub.

“Vantage is proud to lead the way in marking the first financing of a greenfield data center project in Taiwan,” said Joel Cheah, Vantage’s CFO in the Asia-Pacific region. “We appreciate CTBC Bank’s continued confidence in Vantage’s data center platform and are pleased to have the Cathay United Bank team join us in this innovative financial milestone in the next phase of Taiwan’s growth as a regional data center market.” 

Dell'Oro: Network Security SaaS and Virtual Solutions Soar

The network security market in 2023 witnessed a pivotal shift with revenues reaching $22.5 billion, according to a new report from Dell'Oro Group. 

2023 marked a deceleration to a single-digit growth rate, significantly influenced by the declining fortunes of hardware-based solutions, which saw a 1 percent decrease. In stark contrast, the SaaS and virtual network security segments emerged as the industry’s new powerhouses, surging by 26 percent to $9.6 billion. 

Nearly $5 billion  was due to the meteoric 30 percent rise in the SSE market, fueled by the widespread adoption of remote work and cloud applications necessitating SSE’s SaaS-based approach. The divergence between hardware, SaaS, and virtual solutions underscores a broader industry trend towards more agile, cloud-centric security solutions as enterprises seek to navigate the complexities of modern cyber threats and the evolving demands of a digital-first business landscape.

“In a year marked by economic recalibration and strategic introspection within the network security domain, the industry’s gravitation towards SaaS and virtual solutions has been nothing short of revolutionary,” said Mauricio Sanchez, Sr. Director, Enterprise Security and Networking at Dell’Oro Group. “2023’s tempered growth rate, juxtaposed with the explosive rise in demand for adaptable, cloud-centric security measures, paints a vivid picture of an industry at a crossroads, eagerly charting its course towards a more resilient, agile future.”

Additional highlights from the 4Q 2023 Network Security Quarterly Report:

  • The firewall market grew by low single digits in 2023 to nearly $13 B, highlighting its enduring relevance in enterprise defense strategies.
  • The WAF (Web Application Firewall) market displayed remarkable resilience, recording a low double-digit increase, predominantly by the adoption of SaaS-based solutions.
  • A pronounced shift in market dynamics saw North America and EMEA experiencing subdued single-digit revenue growth in 2023, largely attributed to hardware digestion and broader economic uncertainties.
  • Palo Alto Networks and Zscaler emerged as notable 2023 victors in this evolving landscape, with Palo Alto Networks expanding its number-one firewall revenue share to over 25 percent and Zscaler capturing an unprecedented 30 percent of the SSE market to maintain its number-one spot decisively.