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Newsletter October 2010


Ceragon Acquires Greece’s ELXYS

U.S.-based Ceragon, a leader in backhaul solution, acquired Greece’s ELXYS.

Emmanouil Metaxakis, Ph.D. GM and Director of R&D at Ceragon Networks Hellas S.A., discusses this important development.

Recently, ELXYS Solutions, a Greek company of which you were co-founder and CEO, was acquired by Ceragon, a NASDAQ listed, U.S.-based technology company. Tell us a little about ELXYS and the technology it specialised in.

ELXYS Innovations S.A., a unique mix of talent and expertise, started in late 2007 as an independent design house for silicon integrated products for the wireless market. ELXYS very rapidly—in the first two years—developed a valuable Silicon IP portfolio and we became pioneers in the design of silicon integrated circuit radios for microwave frequencies up to 43GHz.

Is it true that the superior performance of ELXYS, in comparison with the industry standard, led Ceragon to express an interest in a buy-out?

There were strong market drivers and the timing was perfect. In the worldwide electronics industry the competition is fierce and the big players seek solutions to reduce equipment and manufacturing costs. It was not only the superior performance and the uniqueness of our solutions that led Ceragon to acquire ELXYS but also the ability of the engineering team to deliver quality products in time.

Will Ceragon Hellas continue to operate in Greece and what are the new plans, in light of your new role as a Ceragon company?

Ceragon Hellas is now a part of the Research and Development department of Ceragon LTD. Most high-tech companies usually establish sales and marketing teams in Greece to capture the Greek or the Balkan market.

In our case, however, Ceragon invested in Greek minds and capabilities to add value to existing products and increase its worldwide market share. The immediate plans are to incorporate our existing radio technology into Ceragon products, which means dedicated, high-level work for the next couple years.

Ceragon must have been duly impressed with the output of the Greek team. Do you believe the specialised capabilities of Ceragon Hellas will offer substantial value added to Ceragon?

We anticipate that our products will be the next generation core technology in Ceragon’s point-to-point wireless communication equipment. By utilising our technology, Ceragon will be able to reduce its production costs, to control its radio technology, and offer to the market a high-end yet competitive solution.

The solutions developed by ELXYS, and now Ceragon Hellas, are 100% exported. This appears to be a win-win strategy for the company and for Greece. Do you believe Greece can further develop its strengths in the area of microelectronics?

During the last decade I have been working with engineers from all over the world.

What I learned from this experience is that Greek engineers not only have the skills and the capabilities to compete with their worldwide peers but they also have diligence, pride and passion, which are unique talents.

I strongly believe that Greece should invest further in microelectronics. In order for the ecosystem to develop further and to contribute to our national GDP, we are hoping that several actions be implemented, such as giving more incentives to microelectronic companies to establish R&D (and not sales) departments in Greece. The government might also consider incentives (mainly taxation) for those high-tech companies that export 100% of their product. 

Do you view the assistance of Invest in Greece Agency as helpful in its role as a facilitator?

I believe that the promotion of investments in our country, as carried by Invest in Greece, especially in light industries (such as microelectronics), together with governmental aid to young entrepreneurs, is an indispensible action for the financial growth.