Cisco Acquires Navini

Cisco announced today that it has reached a “definitive agreement” to purchase Navini Networks, a major player in the mobile WiMAX 802.16e-2005 space.

The move is intended to expand Cisco’s Wi-Fi and Wi-Fi-Mesh assets and to expand what the company calls its “Connected Life” vision, a plan to one day “deliver any service to any device over any network.”

Cisco seems to be taking a long-term global view, and appears to be using the Navini acquisition as a means to penetrate global markets that cannot be reached effectively in other ways. Adding WiMAX technologies to its portfolio, says Cisco in its corporate blog, will enable it to acquire what it hopes will be millions of new business and residential customers who cannot currently be tapped because of the lack of copper and fiber infrastructures in their regions. The deal will cost Cisco approximately $330 million in cash and assumed options and is expected to close in Q2 2008. Once the acquisition is complete, Cisco expects to integrate Navini into its Wireless Networking Business Unit, under the Ethernet and Wireless Technology Group.

Ned Hooper, senior vice president of Cisco’s Corporate Business Development, said in a video release, “Navini’s market leadership in broadband wireless will be added to Cisco’s market leadership around end-to-end IP network capability for service providers, and the Navini team will join Cisco and provide leadership to drive success in this marketplace.”

Naomi Graychase is Managing Editor at Wi-FiPlanet.

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