News & Events

RCBG Client ST Engineering Acquires Newtec

Chicago, IL – RCBG, a strategy and advisory firm specialized in TMT [telecom, media, technology], announced the acquisition by its client, ST Engineering (Singapore Technologies Engineering Limited), of the Newtec Group NV (Newtec), a leader in high-throughput satellite, broadband, mobility, and video distribution products and technology. The acquisition complements ST Engineering’s portfolio for satellite network operators, service providers, and commercial and government users with critical technologies and customer base.

RCBG served as advisor to ST Engineering.

“We congratulate ST and (U.S. subsidiary) iDirect on this exciting transaction for expanding their satellite communication business, market leadership, and future capabilities,” offered William Markey, President of RCBG. “Scale and innovation are what the industry needs to serve the next-generation of high-speed connectivity for aviation, maritime, smart cities, and IoT. We applaud iDirect and Newtec on the vision, and look forward to their growth within ST Engineering”.

ST Engineering’s existing capabilities include leading Very Small Aperture Terminal (VSAT) products for the enterprise, defense and mobility market segments, having led the industry’s transition to High-Throughput Satellite (HTS) managed services. Customers include global satellite operators including Inmarsat, Intelsat, SES and others.

The aggregate purchase consideration of €250m is on a cash-free and debt-free basis, subject to closing adjustments for net debt and debt-like items, and net working capital. The transaction is subject to customary regulatory approvals and is expected to close in the second-half of 2019.

About RCBG
RCBG provides business strategy and advisory services for companies and investors. The firm helps identify and execute on strategic opportunities, often those created by emerging technologies in TMT [telecom, media, technology]. Our support allows leadership to operate from an informed perspective, alert to what is possible, and ultimately worth time and capital. Clients include the leading telecom service providers, their infrastructure partners, the F500, and strategic investors including corporate, venture capital and private equity.

RCBG is headquartered in Chicago, IL.

For more information, please call +1 312 628 6400 or visit www.rcbg.com

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Kestel to Speak on WiFi Panel

CHICAGO, IL – Joe Kestel, vice president at RCBG, will speak and participate on an industry panel at the LightReading “Future of Cable Business Services” event in New York City in December.  His panel will be addressing the topic ‘Playing the Wireless Card’ and exploring the WiFi-enabled business opportunities for cable operators and their SMB and enterprise clients.

“WiFi is increasingly in the center of commercial and consumer value propositions, and widening circle of business, retail, hospitality, automotive, energy and other emerging markets and business models,” said Kestel.  “Our firm has enjoyed working with wireless innovators along the value chain in Europe and Asia this year, and I look forward to sharing insights from parallel markets with LightReading’s audience.”

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RCBG Client Starcom MediaVest Acquires RUN

CHICAGO, IL – RCBG, a strategy and advisory firm specialized in TMT [telecom, media, technology], announced the acquisition by its client, Starcom MediaVest Group, a unit of Publicis Groupe, of RUN, a leading programmatic advertising platform for mobile environments.  RUN’s unique data sets and IDs, atop their data management platform (DMP), will incorporate important data from mobile carriers and connected devices.  This optimizes pattern-based insights and improves predictability and engagement based on consumer interests.

RUN, based in New York City, has complied over 800 million unique profiles, which help improve the targeting, performance and value of mobile advertising.

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Motorola’s Much-Needed Comeback

Americans love a good comeback, whether it’s the Steelers pulling off a Super Bowl win in the final minute or Mickey Rourke snagging an Oscar nomination for “The Wrestler.” But for U.S. corporations, clawing your way back to the top is harder than ever.

For once-mighty Motorola (MOT), it might well be impossible. Given the current economic climate, the company’s plummeting cell-phone sales threaten to drag down its profitable divisions.

That leaves Motorola with some tough choices. When your business is on life support, layoffs and budget cuts alone don’t cut it. Like Motorola, you may be forced to re-evaluate your entire business model, shedding units and products that don’t measure up.

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Motorola’s Three Big Mistakes

Getting in on an industry’s ground floor isn’t enough.

Just ask AOL, Netscape and now Motorola (MOT).

The company recently announced it might sell off its cell phone division, dropping the very products that made the company a worldwide name.

It’s a sobering move.

Motorola, after all, developed the world’s first commercial portable cell phone, way back in 1983. It produced iconic, influential designs, including the first flip phone. Just a few years ago, Motorola’s Razr was the world’s top-selling handset.

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A New Blueprint for Cisco

Cordell Ratzlaff wants to expand the tech giant’s reach by designing products customers can love

Cordell Ratzlaff knows firsthand how top-notch product design comes to be. After all, he once worked for Apple (AAPL) and Steve Jobs, heading up the group that created the look and feel of the Macintosh operating system. But when Ratzlaff arrived at Cisco Systems (CSCO) a year ago, he found that instead of a design czar, the company had product-requirement specs. These dreary documents, crafted by engineers and marketers, tend to get crammed with countless features, with little attention paid to how the product will get used. Only at the last minute are industrial designers brought in to make an item user-friendly. Complains Ratzlaff: “It’s a 200-page document that nobody reads, but everyone spends four months arguing about. It’s like hiring the architect while the cement truck is idling outside.”

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AT&T CEO Ed Whitacre: Lord of the Rings

Edward E. Whitacre Jr. has a thing for airplane hangars. The chief executive of AT&T (T) has cut numerous acquisitions in these cavernous confines, including his $61 billion purchase of Ameritech. So when Whitacre and BellSouth (BLS) CEO F. Duane Ackerman were getting close to finalizing terms for AT&T’s proposed $67 billion acquisition of BellSouth, the two boarded their corporate jets and flew to a nondescript hangar in Memphis.

No deal lieutenants were there. No lawyers or bankers. Just Ed and Duane. Together, they worked the deal out on notepads and shook hands. “We hammered out most of the details right there,” Whitacre said in an interview. “We had a feeling that now was the time to do this.”

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Cisco’s Bold New TV Bet

Until three years ago, Cisco Systems (CSCO) steered clear of cutthroat markets for high-tech consumer gear. It stuck happily to its business of selling high-margin networking equipment to corporations and communications providers.

But Cisco changed tack and in 2003 began a slow, steady march into homes with the purchase of Linksys Group, a maker of routers for consumers. Cisco reckoned it could compensate for lower gross margins on consumer products by keeping operating costs low while cranking up sales. The experiment worked, so Cisco quietly began looking for more deals. In July it went from home offices to the living room by buying tiny KiSS Technology, a maker of networked DVD players (see BW Online, 08/05/05, “Cisco’s Link to Your Living Room”).

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How Motorola Got Its Groove Back

It’s a muggy Friday morning in mid-July and a group of Motorola Inc. (MOT) designers are gathered on the 26th floor in the company’s downtown Chicago design center. They’re looking over prototypes for a new mobile phone when CEO Edward J. Zander pokes his head in the door: “Can I come in?” Dressed casually, in jeans and a polo shirt, he quickly gets down to business. The models on the table are for the Q, a phone with a full QWERTY keyboard designed to compete with the wildly popular BlackBerry, from Research in Motion Ltd. (RIMM) (RIM).

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Vonage: Spending As Fast As It Can

Enticing customers to switch from their tried-and-true phone service to a newfangled brand costs loads of money, and Jeffrey A. Citron is on one heck of a spending spree. Citron, the 34-year-old chief executive of telecom startup Vonage Holdings Corp., has been burning millions in venture funding to market Vonage’s Net-based phone service. His message is simple: Users with broadband connections can save on their bills by hitching their phone to the Net — through a Vonage hookup. It’s called Voice over Internet Protocol, or VoIP, and customers like the economics. Vonage subscriptions have jumped 63% this year, to 700,000. Some 15,000 more jump on board every week.

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