Background Note | HBS Case Collection | September 1999

Revolution in the Communications Switching Industry

by Jay O. Light, Lynda M. Applegate and Daniel J. Green


As data packet switches threatened the voice circuit switch industry in 1999, major switch and router vendors began paying high premiums to acquire venture-backed switch companies. This note explains what a switch is and suggests why large vendors might be so anxious to acquire new technology.

Keywords: Acquisition; Restructuring; Capital; Technology; Technology Adoption; Communications Industry; Electronics Industry;


Light, Jay O., Lynda M. Applegate, and Daniel J. Green. "Revolution in the Communications Switching Industry." Harvard Business School Background Note 800-121, September 1999.