NEC Expands Open RAN Ecosystem with Acquisition of Aspire Tech

With the agreement to acquire Aspire Technology, NEC Corporation has further expanded its capacity to deliver end-to-end Open RAN ecosystems, along with system design and integration for legacy networks, to operators worldwide.

Aspire Technology is an expert in technology solutions and specialized systems integration (SI) with skills in the design and integration of Open Networks, a critical need in the pursuit of successful global adoption of Open RAN 5G.

According to NEC, the company provides solutions and services throughout the network lifecycle for legacy and open architectures, from 2G to 5G, and will continue to leverage their expertise and experience in the growing Open Networks and Open RAN environment.

The acquisition is expected to close in July 2022, after confirmation of the necessary procedures and approvals for each organization.

NEC is a global expert in Open RAN. NEC Open Networks is an ecosystem consisting of an end-to-end suite of open products and solutions, including Open RAN components for disaggregated hardware and software, xHaul transport, converged core, automation/orchestration software, and SI services.

The addition of Aspire Technology strengthens NEC’s SI offering for Open RAN 5G applications, which require a higher level of system design and integration compared to legacy ecosystems.

Aspire Technology was founded in 2009 by a group of executives with more than a century of cumulative telecom experience.

The company provides technology solutions, software applications, consulting and systems integration for Tier-1 telco operators on legacy network architectures, as well as those looking to further drive innovation and reduce total cost of ownership (TCO) through the real promise of breakdown and 5G, states Company.

Aspire Technology has been an Open RAN advocate, building an Open Networks Lab that helps partners accelerate Open Networks development, integration, and testing.

Naohisa Matsuda, Managing Director of NEC’s 5G Strategy and Business said: “NEC has made a strong, public commitment to provide leadership in the rollout of Open RAN. Part of that commitment is building our ability to serve as the key systems integrator for global operators as they adopt Open Networks at their own pace SI is all about people and expertise.

“The strong capabilities and deep pool of talented engineers at Aspire Technology, combined with their portfolio of technology solutions and applications, is a major step forward for our NEC Open Networks strategy. NEC is now better prepared than any vendor to deliver disaggregated network components into a well-tuned ecosystem.”

Bill Walsh, the founder and CEO of Aspire Technology, said: “We believe that the combination of NEC and Aspire Technology will deliver tremendous benefits for our customers, both on legacy networks and for customers evolving into the more open environment, as well as to the wider 5G and Open RAN marketplace, which is growing rapidly.

“We share a common vision of the 5G and Open RAN market, and a history of delivering complex integration projects with some of the largest carriers in the world. Together, we are creating an exciting and comprehensive 5G solutions portfolio.”

NEC covers all domains and layers of telecom networks, from fronthaul to backhaul, physical and virtual networks, to service management and orchestration, monetization and customer engagement using Digital BSS/OSS solutions from its subsidiary Netcracker. NEC states that the company is committed to providing open, secure and efficient 5G networks with end-to-end carrier-grade quality, from core to edge, around the world.

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