Earlier today, Cisco confirmed rumors that it plans to spend $5 billion to buy NDS Group Ltd., a provider of video software and content security solutions that help service providers and media companies deliver and monetize video entertainment.

The purchase price includes the assumption of debt and retention-based incentives.  Already approved by both boards, Cisco could close in the second half of this year, following all “customary closing conditions.”?

Cisco believes the NDS deal “will complement and accelerate the delivery of its Videoscape platform built for service providers and media companies that want to deliver next-gen entertainment. “Acquiring NDS will broaden Cisco’s opportunities in the service provider market, expanding its reach into emerging markets, such as China and India, where NDS has an established customer footprint,” it adds.

Dr. Abe Peled, NDS’ executive chairman, will be named senior vice president and chief strategist for Cisco’s Video & Collaboration Group when the deal closes. He comments, ?"Cisco and NDS are helping drive the transition that will enable service providers and media companies to offer new revenue-generating video experiences. NDS’s open-software video platform and services are highly complementary to Cisco technology, and together we are uniquely positioned to enable service providers to deliver fresh and exciting multi-screen video services to their customers.”

Other highlights:

>> The addition of NDS’ software solutions, including the end-user viewing client and content security solutions combined with its systems integration expertise, is expected to accelerate delivery of the Cisco Videoscape platform.?>> A “significant” portion of NDS’s software, services and content protection business is recurring, Cisco says, with long-term contracts, typically with an average duration of approximately five years.
>> Prior to the close, Cisco and NDS will continue to operate as separate companies.
When combined, NDS’s global operations, including sites in the U.K., Israel, France, India and China, and its approximately 5,000 employees, will join the Cisco Service Provider Video Technology Group (SPVTG), led by Senior Vice President/General Manager Jesper Andersen.

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