InfiniBand Hardware, Software Developers Merge

InfiniSwitch grabs Lane15, plans integrated product offering soon

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A slow market and the need to bundle solutions brought two InfiniBand developers together in a merger unveiled Monday.

InfiniSwitch, a Westborough, Mass.-based developer of InfiniBand switches, said Monday that it would merge with Lane15 Software, an Austin, Texas-based developer of management software for InfiniBand.

The new entity will be known as InfiniSwitch for the next few months until the company unveils its combined product and channel offering, said Terry Dickson, vice president of marketing for the former Lane15.

Legally, InfiniSwitch acquired Lane15 for an undisclosed amount of money, Dickson said. Heading the combined organization as CEO will be Alisa Nessler, formerly CEO of Lane15. Don Zereski, former CEO of InfiniSwitch, will serve as an adviser to the new company, but will no longer remain an executive there, Dickson said.

Lane15 had been shopping for a buyer for some time because of the poor IT market and because InfiniBand in particular has been slow to gain marketplace acceptance, Dickson said.

"For a while, it looked like InfiniBand had a short time to market, and the major OEMs like Hewlett-Packard, Compaq, IBM and Dell looked like they would quickly integrate the technology," Dickson said. But "over time, the OEMs lost their interest."

As a combined company, InfiniSwitch can now leverage both the switch and the software technology to offer integrated InfiniBand solutions, Dickson said. The company plans to unveil its first new products as a combined organization, a high-power computing bundle including InfiniBand software, adapters, and a switch, in a couple of weeks, he said.

Also Monday, InfiniSwitch received a new round of financing worth about $12 million. As a result, the new InfiniSwitch currently has about $20 million in cash, giving it at least 18 months of operations not counting any expected revenue, Dickson said.

Investors in either InfiniSwitch or Lane15 include Dell, HP, Intel, and Quanta Computer. However, Dickson refused to disclose who contributed to the new $12 million round.

InfiniBand aims to simplify connections between servers and storage and network devices by replacing a variety of different cables and connectors with a single connectivity solution that works with all devices.

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