Since rolling out its Videoscape product at the Consumer Electronics Show in January, Cisco’s customers have asked the vendor to help them transition to the new architecture. To assist with that, Cisco is purchasing BNI Video for approximately $99 million in cash and retention-based incentives in exchange for all shares of BNI Video.

Cisco has announced two Videoscape customers: Australia’s Telstra and Korea Telecom. The BNI Video acquisition follows Cisco’s recent buys of ExtendMedia and Inlet Technologies, which also strengthen its Videoscape portfolio.

Privately held BNI Video, headquartered in Boxborough, Mass., supplies service providers with two key products: video back office and content-delivery-network (CDN) analytics. Cisco says the acquisition will advance the capabilities of its Videoscape multi-screen TV platform. (For more, see Cisco’s Videoscape Not New But It Could Be A Game Changer).

"BNI is completely complementary to things we bring and also brings video back-office capability as part of the long-term Videoscape architecture," says Kip Compton, vice president/Strategy and Product Management in Cisco’s Service Provider Video Technology Group.

Comcast, Time Warner Cable and Cisco were investors in BNI Video.

"Time Warner Cable invested early in BNI Video as it brought a unique software platform to market that addresses the back-office complexities of delivering TV Everywhere services," said Mike LaJoie, CTO at Time Warner Cable, in a statement.?

In addition to back office capabilities, BNI brings CDN analytics to the table. Although Cisco has a CDN product (dubbed Content Delivery System [CDS]), the analytics showing "who’s doing what and when and quality of service on a large scale will be a new offering for Cisco," says Compton.

Adds BNI Founder/CEO Conrad Clemson, "BNI is pure software. It sits in the control plane above the CDN. We don’t build a CDN; we build a service manager." (For more, see BNI Video Launches Video Control Plane).

Upon the close of the acquisition in the second quarter of Cisco’s FY12, BNI Video employees will be integrated into Cisco’s Service Provider Video Technology Group.

-Linda Hardesty

The Daily

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