Arris CEO: industry at ‘front end’ of upgrade cycle

Bruce McClelland

Bruce McClelland

Arris’ new CEO Bruce McClelland says that the industry stands “at the front end of a significant upgrade cycle” as operators seeks “more bandwidth into residential as well as corporate networks”.

There will however be no radical shift in strategy for Arris under McClelland, recently named as successor to long-serving Bob Stanzione, who is to take on the new role of executive chairman within the cable and video technology company.

Interviewed after the succession announcement was made in August, McClelland told Digital TV Europe that the pay TV market remained robust and that the service provider consumer premises business – encompassing both set-top boxes and IP gateways – remains “very strong” despite earlier concerns that the business faced a long-term decline.

Arris’ recent acquisition of Pace can be seen as a vote of confidence in the continued robustness of this business. McClelland said that the acquisition gave Arris “more scale” as well as a route into the satellite business where it lacked a strong presence. He added that the most of the work to integrate the Arris business has already been done.

“The business is going to change,” said McClelland. “At some point, all delivery of content will be over IP. Operators are doing that to provide an enhanced user experience and bring in OTT content as well as their own service’s content. That will mean evolution of the type of devices they deploy. However, the majority of pay TV service providers market services around the consumer experience in the home and they highlight the capabilities of their devices – and that is a crucial part of the foundation of what they offer. It is a way to generate confidence in the service.”

He said that CE devices will become more relevant as consumer seek to move content around the home wirelessly. However, McClelland said he did not expect the set-top market as a whole to see significant growth as operators focused on a wider range of client devices including gateways.

McClelland said that cable operators, including in the US, had shown their enduring strength as they ramped up growing numbers of broadband customers. One task for companies such as Arris is to help these operators manage the migration to all-IP networks, he said.

Looking forward, McClelland said that Arris wanted to address some gaps in its presence internationally, possibly through further acquisitions. International business is likely to be the key driver for

Arris’ future growth as a company, he said. “Growing the international business is a long terms objective, but you need to be there with products that fit the customer’s needs,” he said.

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