(Boston, Mass.) — The Photonics Center at Boston University and its partner, Beacon Telco, will tap into the projected $15.2 billion optical networking systems market through a stake in Verilink Corporation (Nasdaq: VRLK).
Based on the agreement, Verilink, which provides business-to-business connectivity solutions, will establish a product development site in the Center’s Business Incubator, focusing on cutting-edge optical access solutions that meet the accelerating demand for broadband access via optical fiber.
“Verilink’s strategic alliance with the Photonics Center and Beacon Telco is aimed at quickly establishing the company as a leader in broadband optical access,” said Graham G. Pattison, president and C.E.O. of Verilink. “Verilink’s new optical product development center will also provide our company a strategic R&D presence located in Boston, Massachusetts, the world’s hot bed of optical networking activity.”
Verilink will have access to the Center’s $110 million infrastructure, encompassing over $25 million in equipment and a state-of-the-art fiber optic draw tower housed in the new Lightwave Technology Laboratory.
“This strategic alliance gives Verilink access to the Center’s assets – laboratories, capital equipment, and technical expertise – to speed its entry into the optical networking market,” noted Shawn Burke, deputy director of the Photonics Center.
“It builds upon Boston University’s leading position as an enabler of photonics technology and product development, and will assist Verilink in attracting top engineering talent.”
Through the Center’s partnership with Beacon Telco, a venture capital development company focused on creating and investing in optical networking and broadband communications,
Verilink will have access to investment capital. “Beacon Telco is very excited about the potential of our relationship with a first- rate management team and company with strong engineering capabilities, customer relationships and distribution channels,” said Alok Prasad, president of Beacon Telco. “We feel that Verilink will be a key asset in our portfolio, as fiber dominates broadband networks.”
Beacon Telco has taken stake in Verilink in the form or warrants for 15% of Verilink’s common stock that will vest over time, subject to acceleration based on meeting development milestones and certain other events, including the market price of Verilink common stock.
The Photonics Center was launched by Boston University in 1994 as a new model for university-industry collaboration. The Center accelerates the development of new products and companies enabled by emerging photonics technologies, from both within and outside Boston University, by forging business partnerships with new and existing companies. Further information about the Photonics Center and its partners is available at http://www.bu.edu/photonics.