Stratus buys Cemprus for SS7 signaling software

Stratus Technologies is beefing up its telecom portfolio with the acquisition of Cemprus, bringing it telecommunications signaling software that it can combine with its redundant server platforms.

The purchase gives the company SS7 signaling software for traditional phone networks and intelligent gateway software so traditional and IP voice gear can talk to each other. This software can be used to support higher-level telephony applications such as 800-number and calling-card services.

This software can be melded with Stratus’ redundant hardware servers called Fault Tolerant (FT) Servers to create application servers, signaling gateways, softswitches and other server-based gear needed for new IP phone networks, according to Ali Kafel, Stratus’ director of telecom products. The FT Servers are designed to strict standards required for equipment to be allowed in telco switching offices.

Cemprus brings 40 customers, among them some of the major telecommunications providers such as AT&T, Sprint, NTT Communications, Vodafone Group and Telstra. It also brings 50 employees, lifting the Stratus headcount to 875. The deal should also boost Stratus’ revenue by 12 percent to 15 percent, Kafel says.

The company is privately held, but in 1998 when it was sold to Ascend Communications for US$822 million its revenues were $600 million, Kafel says. The company may go public again within the year, depending on business and stock market conditions, says Ken Donoghue, a spokesman for Stratus. "It’s a good possibility," he says.

The company Ascend bought was called Stratus Computer. Ascend wanted only its telco technology, so sold its enterprise products to a group that formed Stratus Technologies. Later, Ascend was bought by Lucent Technologies, which sold off the former Stratus telco technology. Cemprus was formed to sell that gear about a year ago.

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