Cisco Buys Into Mobile Broadband


Cisco plans to acquire mobile-Internet infrastructure provider Starent Networks for about $2.9 billion, the networking giant announced Tuesday.

The deal comes two weeks after Cisco said it would spend about $3 billion to buy videoconferencing-systems vendor Tandberg — see Cisco Buying Norway’s Tandberg (Not Tandberg Television, Formerly of Norway).

Cox Communications, which is building out its own 3G wireless network and plans to launch service sometime before the end of 2009, earlier this year selected Starent’s multimedia core networking platform to provide mobile Internet services. Cox will use the Starent system for “content filtering, network-based traffic optimization, application detection and optimization, and security.”

Other Starent customers include Verizon Wireless, Sprint and Alltel. The Tewksbury, Mass.-based company, founded in 2000, says its products have been deployed by more than 95 mobile operators in more than 40 countries.

Starent has approximately 1,000 employees worldwide and had net income of $60.5 million on revenue of $254.1 million in 2008.