Canadian firm buys Aviat's WiMax business

A Canadian maker of wireless broadband equipment for enterprises is expanding its portfolio through an acquisition it believes will help the company sell its coming WiMax-to-LTE conversion gear.

Eion Networks Inc. said that earlier this month it bought the WiMax division of Santa Clara, Calif.-based Aviat Networks Inc., including its StarMAX fixed and mobile base stations, gateways and end-user devices.

"This is a big strategic step for Eion, both from the product and customer point of view," Kalain Kalaichelvan, chairman and CEO of privately-held Eion said in an interview.

"Their portfolio of products really compliments what we are doing because they have 4G (fourth generation wireless) products.

"The second main reason is Aviat sells to Tier 1 and 2 service providers, and we sell to a lot of enterprises ... so this can be the springboard for us into launching LTE."

Eion's upgrade solution to LTE will be ready by next summer, he said. Over the next six to 12 months WiMax providers will want to convert and "we are already in their living room," Kalaichelvan said.