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As was rumored and reported upon in January, ARRIS International and Broadcom Limited today jointly announced that they have entered into an agreement for ARRIS to acquire Brocade Communication Systems Inc.'s Ruckus Wireless and ICX Switch business for $800 million in cash, plus the additional cost of unvested employee stock awards, following the closing of Broadcom's acquisition of Brocade.
Some were skeptical that this deal would occur, but the reports in January were right on target. In addition, Arris' CFO signaled a possible move into wireless at a Wall Street conference in January.
"This portfolio will expand ARRIS's leadership in converged wired and wireless networking technologies beyond the home into the education, public venue, enterprise, hospitality, and MDU segments. ARRIS plans to establish a dedicated business unit within the company focused on innovative wireless networking and wired switching technology to address evolving and emerging needs across a number of vertical markets." Arris said in a statement announcing the deal.
Converged wired and wireless networking technologies, or 'hybrid networks', are the key. As I wrote last month, expect to see Ruckus technology deployed as Arris' two largest customers, Comcast and Charter, introduce wireless offerings this year. Making wireless cell networks and Wifi work smoothly together will be critical to the Cable companies' plans.
Why Arris might bid on Ruckus Wireless assets? For its own customers, of course