Com21 to File Chapter 11

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Com21 Inc. is throwing in the cable towel, announcing that it has voluntarily
filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy and it intends to sell off its cable-modem-termination-system line
to Arris.

The Milpitas, Calif.-based company filed its reorganization plans with the
U.S. Bankruptcy Court in the Northern District of California this week.

Under the reorganization schedule, Com21 will have to present a
reorganization plan to its creditors, probably in late August. Meanwhile, the
company has frozen payments to its vendors and suppliers pending court
authorization of payment.

As part of the filing, the company announced that it is negotiating to sell
off its Data Over Cable Service Interface Specification CMTS products and its
Irish subsidiary to Arris. That process has not been completed, so there is no
sale price set.

If it is successful, Arris will take over the technology it has in part
already licensed from Com21. This spring, Arris cut a deal with Com21 to use its
design for a midcapacity CMTS. The resulting "Cadent
C3" fills out Arris’ product line, sitting between its high-capacity "Cadent C4"
and its smaller "Cornerstone 1500" unit.

Com21 had also been in the business of producing cable modems, but in the
past two years, it had refocused its DOCSIS business on the CMTS units.

The Com21 reorganization may focus on video systems. Com21 debuted the first
elements of a digital headend system aimed at video-on-demand services at
December’s Western Show. Going forward, that may well be a large part of its
reorganization plan.

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