RealTime IT News

On the Orient Express

Lately, Global Crossing has been hot. This week, the company was able to sell its Web hosting division, GlobalCenter, for $6.5 billion.

Next week? Well, the company plans to spin-off Asia Global Crossing. By all accounts, it looks like a Top A deal. Goldman Sachs is the lead underwriter and the price range is $14-$16, with a whopping 62.2 million shares to be issued. The ticker symbol has yet to be announced.

Asia Global Crossing wants to live up to its name, as it plans to create the first pan-Asian telecom carrier to provide data, voice, Web hosing and Internet services to business customers. The network will have everything: city fiber rings, backhaul connections, subsea cables ...

The company is a joint venture. Partners include such biggies as Microsoft, Softbank and, of course, Global Crossing.

Expect the guts of the network to be online by the end of 2001 and, as a result, expect the company to be a hot IPO next week.

Another hot one should be Oplink Communications. The lead underwriter is Robertson Stephens and the price range is $10-$12 (the company plans to issue 13.7 million shares). The proposed ticker symbol is OPLK.

The company develops equipment that allows fiber optic systems to run much better. Applications include: wavelength expansion (huge amounts of data can travel through multiple wavelengths of light); optical amplication (optical signals can be amplified without the need to enhance signals electronically); wavelength performance monitoring and protection (this manages the direction of light signals by analyzing wavelength performance within an optical network); and optical switching (this allows for redirection of light signals to multiple points without the need to convert signals into electrical ones).

Got that? Well, it is heady stuff, but also in heavy demand. The company has been able to sign on clients like Cisco, Corning, NEC, Nortel, Lucent, JDS Uniphase, Sycamore Networks and Alcatel Optronics.

Of course, the companys financials have been growing nicely. In the first nine months ending March 31, 2000, the company had sales of $20.6 million, which compares to $5.2 million in the same period a year ago.