Cisco buys British : £3 billion for streaming TV company NDS Group
The California company Cisco is buying the the British pay TV technology company, NDS Group, part-owned by News Corp. for about £3 billion. NDS, headquartered at Staines, makes software that lets companies stream videos to consumers using a variety of devices. Its technology also offers security protection for those streams, Consumers can also select different video offerings. Cisco said the deal will enhance its own streaming technology, known as Videoscape, and give new opportunities in emerging markets, such as China and India. NDS already has contracts with telecommunications providers there. "Our strategy has always been driven by customer need and on capturing market transitions," Cisco CEO John Chambers said, according to the San Jose Mercury News "Our acquisition of NDS fits squarely into this strategy." NDS executive chairman Abe Peled said the deal with Cisco would give telecoms providers a broader choice of software and "hardware solutions." NDS annual revenue is nearly $1 billion. Tech analyst Brian Marshall of ISI Group said with sales growing at below 10 percent a year, the £3 billion price seemed "rich." NDS, with about 5,000 employees, is 51% owned by the private equity firm Permira and 49% by News Corp.