September 2013 in review: New building for Ericsson Canada, Verizon waves goodbye

The collapse of Nortel Networks worried a lot of people in the Ottawa area, where the company had a large research and development facility.

But it also had valuable intellectual property, which was picked up by a number of leading IT firms that wanted researchers to keep on doing their work there.

Among them was wireless carrier network equipment maker Ericsson, which bought Nortel’s wireless assets and lab, then added to its Ottawa-area property by buying BelAir Networks.

However, the Nortel campus itself was one of the assets that would eventually be sold off by creditors, requiring Ericsson and others to find a new premise.

In September it opened a 245,000 sq. ft facility for all of its 900 Ottawa-area employees who will now be under one roof.

Also that month, after teasing reporters and financial analysts with the prospect of buying a startup Canadian wireless carrier Verizon Wireless turned its back on this country. All those headlines and angst by Bell, Rogers and Telus for nothing.

Nothing because despite decisions by the Harper government to relax foreign telecom investment rules and to cap how much spectrum incumbents can buy in the upcoming 700 MHz spectrum auction only one international carrier has invested in a Canadian wireless operator.

Meanwhile financially-troubled Mobilicity was given protection from creditors as the startup carrier tried to restructure.

BlackBerry’s woes continued as it reported another quarter in the red, this time almost $1 billion. Any hope the company could buy time until its new Z and Q-series handsets had firmly grabbed buyers was gone when it announced 4,500 employees would be laid off.

Then Fairfax Financial, its biggest single investor, stunned many when it decided to try to assemble a consortium of investors to take the company private.

Also in September we wrote about Toronto-based Bionym Inc., which created a bracelet that uses a wearer’s heartbeat to validate that person’s identity for device access control.

Rogers Communications decided that Guy Laurence, 51, who had led Vodafone UK since 2008, would become the cable company’s CEO starting in December.  Rogers also bought data centres in Calgary, Edmonton and Ottawa to go along with those it gained in April by buying Blackiron, continuing a trend that sees carriers building up their data centre offerings.

A severe thunderstorm that dumped more than five inches of rain on Toronto in just two hours and caused over $850 million in damages this summer, turned out to be the perfect occasion to test out BCS Global Network’s disaster recover (DR) plan. Read why

Intel Corp. said it had integrated its Data Centre Manager (DCM) software with a power management solution from Vancouver’s TSO Logic. Its Application-Aware Power Management solution facilitates communication with servers, enabling organizations to track the power consumed by individual applications.


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Howard Solomon
Howard Solomon
Currently a freelance writer, I'm the former editor of and Computing Canada. An IT journalist since 1997, I've written for several of ITWC's sister publications including and Computer Dealer News. Before that I was a staff reporter at the Calgary Herald and the Brampton (Ont.) Daily Times. I can be reached at hsolomon [@]

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