Enablence Technologies Inc
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Alpheus invests in high-bandwidth services in Texas
Alpheus Communications, a Texas provider of metro-regional fiber and networking services, plans to invest more than $10 million this year to expand its workforce and fiber network as the company focuses on selling high-bandwidth services directly to Texas businesses. The Houston-based company expects its workforce to grow by more than 30% this year as customer service, sales, and technical staff are added to support Alpheus’s growth plans.Alpheus says it is launching into the enterprise market from a strong foundation – since 2001, America’s largest telecom carriers have relied on Alpheus’s fiber network to serve their Texas customers. Alpheus will now use its network and management expertise to sell directly to businesses in Texas’s largest metro areas, including Houston, Dallas, Fort Worth, Austin, and San Antonio.More than 88,000 buildings in Texas are metro Ethernet qualified on the Alpheus network, which means businesses in those locations can get secure, high-bandwidth Ethernet services from Alpheus that’s more affordable and easier to manage than traditional network circuits, the company asserts. The service provider has more than 2,800 miles of long-haul fiber and 3,200 miles of metro fiber, which Alpheus says businesses can use to connect multiple locations throughout Texas.“We are making a big investment in the people and technology needed to take this company to the next level so that Alpheus and Texas businesses can begin forming direct and long-lasting relationships,” said Alpheus CEO Scott Widham. “Alpheus is benefiting from Houston’s deep talent pool, and we are eagerly hiring employees whose experience serving business customers will further strengthen our ability to succeed with enterprises.”The Alpheus core network offers what the company claims is better than 99.999% availability. Texas businesses can benefit from a variety of Alpheus services, including metro Ethernet services, regional long-haul transport, dedicated Internet access, data center colocation, and business voice services.The Alpheus fiber network is connected to more than 300 central offices and points-of-presence, which creates a dense metro fiber infrastructure throughout the company’s strategic markets of Houston, Dallas, Fort Worth, San Antonio, and Austin.
Enablence Technologies finds bridge funding
Enablence Technologies Inc. (TSX VENTURE:ENA) says it has staved off insolvency -- for the time being, at least -- via a US$3 million bridge loan from a California bank. To raise even more cash, Enablence announced it also will sell its wholly owned photodiode business, ENA Switzerland.The bridge loan will enable Enablence to remain in business while it finalizes the renegotiation of certain secured notes payable worth a total of approximately US$11 million. Company management says it expects to finalize the revised payment terms this month. The bridge loan will be guaranteed by a third party secured against the company. Enablence did not reveal the identity of the California bank or the third-party guarantor.Enablence has been bleeding cash for some time, despite selling off several parts, including its systems unit to Aurora Networks (see “Aurora Networks buys Trident7 PON line from Enablence Technologies”). Company management revealed at the end of May that it was almost out of money, it had stopped making payments on its $3.0 million convertible debenture, and was in violation of bank covenants for a $2.8 million secured note payable (see “Enablence Technologies management warns of insolvency”).While the notes were due on June 23, 2012, the note holders have agreed not to begin collection actions while the payment renegotiations remain ongoing, the company now says. Enablence management is also looking for additional financing, either from strategic or financial investors.Money from the sale of ENA Switzerland (formerly Albis Optoelectronics) will be used to partially repay the bridge loan and the note holders, as well as fund continuing operations."This bridge loan and the planned sale of ENA Switzerland is a significant step towards putting Enablence on a sound financial footing so that the company can secure its long-term future and continue to provide its customers with reliable and uninterrupted products and services going forward," said Peter Dey, chairman of Enablence. "Thanks to the continued support of our Tier 1 customers and key suppliers, we have been able to operate normally through the month of June. We expect to report an increase of over 30% in revenues for the June quarter as compared to the March quarter.“Furthermore, our joint-venture company, Sunblence Technologies, has begun shipping its first commercial splitter products and is aggressively ramping up capacity to meet anticipated growth in local access markets,” Day added. “We will provide more details when we report our year-end results later this summer."
ABI Research: FTTP too expensive for telcos?
While national broadband initiatives have some network operators looking at upgrading their access networks to fiber to the premises (FTTP), the cost of such roll outs, combined with advances in DSL technology, are leading some carriers to shy away from FTTP, says market research and analysis firm ABI Research.This trend is particularly strong in Europe, where macroeconomic challenges make the cost/benefit tradeoff of FTTP more difficult. “Financial instability in the advanced economies of Western Europe and lack of innovative internet video services force telco’s to look into the cost to value proposition delivered by making large scale investments into FTTH,” according to Adarsh Krishnan, senior analyst of TV & Video at ABI Research.DSL-enabled copper networks served more than 367 million subscribers worldwide in 2011, according to ABI. Global revenues from DSL broadband services have seen incremental growth to reach $106 billion, a CAGR growth of 14% in the last 5 years ending in 2011. Much like the FTTH space, Asia-Pacific serves as the major growth engine, with China playing a dominant role. China accounted for 33% of the worldwide subscribers in 2011.Nevertheless, carriers around the world have begun to employ FTTH as a way to provide more bandwidth to subscribers, either to meet government-mandated national broadband targets or for competitive reasons. But in many cases, they haven’t been able to shoulder the cost of FTTH deployment alone, says ABI Research.“Strong government initiatives to develop fiber infrastructure have in most cases been a necessary prerequisite to fund FTTH or fiber to the building (FTTB) deployments. These incentives have been strongest in Western Europe and Asia-Pacific,” according to Sam Rosen, practice director of TV & Video at ABI Research.Worldwide, FTTH/B service revenues reached $29.6 billion in 2011, according to ABI Research.Thefindings are part of ABI Research’s Broadband CPE service, which provides insight into telco’s network deployments as well as consumer adoption and service revenues for DSL and fiber broadband services.
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