COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. IP Unity Inc. has acquired the messaging business of Glenayre Technologies Inc. (New York) for $25 million in cash, and will rename the company IP Unity Glenayre.
Bruce Bales, chief executive of the Glenayre group, based in Duluth, Ga., said branding confusion will be unlikely, as the Glenayre parent is seeking shareholder approval to rename itself Entertainment Distribution Co.
IP Unity is a developer of media servers for messaging based on Internet Protocol. Its traditional base in wireline carriers and cable TV multi-system operators needed to be augmented with a strong play among wireless operators, IP Unity chief executive Arun Sobti said in a Dec. 14 analyst conference call. Glenayre's messaging business was migrating to IP, but had a strong base in wireless services such as SMS.
Glenayre Technologies formerly was a diversified provider of backhaul radio. Through its Glenayre Western Multiplex division, for example, it was an early player in Local Multipoint Distribution System and pre-WiMax radios. But after spinning its backhaul assets off to Proxim Corp., the parent limited itself to messaging and media distribution.
Last year, Glenayre's EDC division took over the pre-recorded media distribution business of Universal Music Group, and looked for merger or sale opportunities for its messaging group. Sobti said that "at that time, we at IP Unity recognized that scale was important for continuing in the messaging business, and we needed a stronger play in wireless markets."
Sobti said that IP Unity's own message server will be the remaining application server as the two companies' portfolios are merged, but that products from both companies will be considered for preservation under the IP Unity Glenayre label. The merged company will retain development operations in Milpitas, Calif.; Quincy, Ill.; Singapore; and Bangalore, India.