In 2002, Dave Weymouth and Mike Perry identified that the optical transport needs of large and small telecom service providers were not being fulfilled by existing vendors. They founded Optelian that same year under a self-funded business model. Optelian’s focus from day one was to provide quality products, on-time delivery, and exceptional customer care.
Dave and Mike decided that the best way to form successful relationships with their customers was to design, build, and market their own products. In 2002, while most other telecom vendors in North America were outsourcing manufacturing overseas, the co-founders believed that in-house manufacturing was critical to ensuring quality and industry-leading speed of delivery to customers.
In 2003, the telecom market was going through a global downturn. However, Optelian was already having success with its optical products among service providers, including tier 1 carriers. By the fall of 2004, sales were accelerating; by 2006, the product portfolio had expanded to include a broad set of optical transport applications; by 2008, sales had expanded to a broad customer base.
Since then, Optelian has been very successful with introducing a variety of packet optical products with industry-leading scalability, flexibility, and first-in cost, with minimal footprint and accommodation requirements (space, power, etc.), including hardened platforms. They have over 200 customers with a broad range of solutions from access to long-haul, passive to packet, and 100M to 100G, scaling to 8 Tb/s per fiber, and powered by an intuitive management system that focuses on what is most important to customers – delivering services easily and cost effectively.
Optelian’s in-house manufacturing in Ottawa continues to thrive, and leads the industry in the speed to deliver high-quality products to its customer base. Customers in North America and beyond greatly value Optelian as a partner with this capability.
The evolution of the philosophy of in-house manufacturing is the vertical integration of packet optical technology across systems, sub-systems, and components. As part of this, Optelian acquired Versawave in 2011 for its ultra-high-bandwidth Gallium Arsenide modulators. Such technologies are a foundation for the evolution to Terabit transport in the years to come.
In 2012, Optelian Services was established to provide Engineering, Furnishing, and Installation (EF&I) services to customers globally, and has grown rapidly.
In 2013, Optelian has been widely recognized for its achievements, including awards such as Deloitte’s Fast 50. Today, they have over 200 employees including the in-house manufacturing team, a strong customer-focused sales team, and an experienced and creative engineering team. Optelian has delivered more than 20,000 systems with over 300,000 wavelengths installed. They continue to work closely with customers to offer best-in-class quality, fast delivery, and customized solutions. This is achieved by listening, innovating, learning, and above all, enjoying doing it.
Analysts see continued strong growth of the packet optical transport market (including the 100G market) for the foreseeable future, driven by several key trends:
- The continued global rollout of internet infrastructure, as video (especially HDTV) over the internet drives demand for bandwidth, with instantaneous access, in both fixed/wireline and wireless networks
- The explosion in smartphones driving 4G/LTE network deployments, with evolution to 5G networks and microcells with ubiquitous wireless access
- Continued growth in cloud-based applications with instantaneous response, and the growth of machine-to-machine (M2M) communications.
Optelian is a leader in the technologies that support these developments, and is poised for its next phase of success in the years to come.