Motorola Solutions Agrees to Buy Kodiak
Monday, May 01, 2017 | Comments
Motorola Solutions entered into an agreement to acquire Kodiak Networks, a privately held provider of broadband push-to-talk (PTT) technology for commercial customers. Kodiak partners with mobile network operators globally — including AT&T — to offer its cloud-based PTT solution and management platform.

The acquisition of Kodiak adds a complementary, carrier-integrated PTT-over-cellular (POC) solution to Motorola Solutions’ existing WAVE PTT portfolio, which includes solutions for “over-the-top” broadband PTT.

Jeff Spaeth, Motorola vice president of software and systems enablement, said there are three legs to the PTT market. The first is flexible over-the-top PTT solutions that integrate various networks, and its WAVE products target that segment. The second area is high-performance public-safety Long Term Evolution (LTE) and tightly integrated PTT solutions with networks. Spaeth said an example is Motorola’s WAVE 7000, which is being integrated into EE’s commercial network in the United Kingdom for the Emergency Services Network (ESN). The third market is for carrier-integrated services targeting the commercial and industrial sectors.

“Kodiak has a big presence in that area and knows how to serve carriers with security and reliability, and this acquisition is about shoring up our presence to that market,” he said.

Spaeth said the acquisition is not tied to AT&T or Motorola’s work with FirstNet under the AT&T contract with FirstNet. He said many Kodiak carrier customers are former iDEN carriers, and Kodiak’s focus is on the commercial and industrial markets for those carriers.

The Third Generation Partnership Project (3GPP) has included preliminary mission-critical PTT (MCPTT) standards in Release 13, and Spaeth said the WAVE product line includes those standards, but he also noted over-the-top solutions don’t have a link to the LTE network, so there are limits for MCPTT. The network itself also has to be mission critical.

Kodiak’s POC technology was part of the Open Mobile Alliance (OMA) Push to Communicate for Public Safety (PCPS), which is part of the 3GPP Release 13 MCPTT standards.

Kodiak has several LMR vendor partnerships, including certifications with Zetron and testing with Airbus DS Communications using the Project 25 (P25) Inter RF Subsystem Interface (ISSI). Spaeth said Motorola will review those relationships after the acquisition is final.

Kodiak was founded in 2001 and is headquartered in Plano, Texas. Spaeth said he expects Kodiak employees will become part of Motorola Solutions after the transaction closes but declined to say how many Kodiak employees there are.

The terms of the transaction were not disclosed. The acquisition agreement is subject to customary closing conditions and is expected to close in the second half of this year.

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