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Wire Journal News

Radix Wire has been acquired by High Road Capital, a U.S. private equity fund that has completed 44 such investments in companies based in the U.S. and Canada.

A press release said that the company, which manufactures high-temperature and fire-resistant wire and cable, will now be called Radix Wire & Cable (RWC). Founded in 1944, the company’s brands include Sil-A-Blend®, DuraBlend®, DuraFlex® and the first 550°C UL-listed wire.

South Korea’s LS Cable & System (LSCS) reports that it will join a project in Oman being financed by the Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank (AIIB).

A press release said that the project, to build a broadband communications network in Oman, is led by its government and state-run mobile operator Oman BroadBand. This marks the first time that the broadband project is being carried out at a national level.
The release said that by 2021, the first stage of the project, worth approximately $178 million, will be completed in key cities, including Muscat, the capital and largest city of Oman. By 2030, the network will be expanded to other cities in the second stage of the project.

Per an AIIB report, the project will roll out a fiber optic network to more than 400,000 homes/premises by the end of 2021. The first phase calls for some 4,100 km of fiber optic cables and some 9,500 km of drop cables. When completed, 80% of Muscat will be fiber-ready for connection with the gigabit-capable optical networks. “The project will improve Oman’s infrastructure in the information and communication technology sector, thereby increasing the attractiveness of Oman as a destination for manufacturing business and strategic logistics services,” it said.

LSCS will lead the design of the communications network, the engineering and supplying fiber optic cables, the release said. It noted that LCSC has carried out large projects near Qatar in the Middle East, with support from related organizations, including bodies such as KOTRA, a South Korean trade organization, and the Korea Information & Communication Contractors Association.

Corning Inc. has signed up to be the first tenant in a new business park being built in Hickory, North Carolina, a $60 million investment in its Optical Communications division.

A story by David Boraks, WFAE, said that city and Catawba County officials report that the plant will be built on 27 acres at the Trivium Corporate Center, between Robinwood and Startown roads. Local officials had been referring to the plan as "Project Wave" during negotiations with Corning.

The announcement came after the Hickory City Council and Catawba County Commission approved a series of incentives that provide Corning the land, valued at $605,000, and granting up to $1.7 million in tax rebates over five years. Corning also was given an option to acquire another 4.4 acres.

The project was expected to create 110 new jobs, the report said. Corning has committed to creating 75 new jobs by Dec. 31, 2020, and the remainder by Dec. 31, 2023. The manufacturing capacity will be used to produce a range of optical fiber and cable.

"Corning is investing in tomorrow’s growth today, as the growing number of connected devices fuels demand for our optical fiber and cable innovations," Dr. Bernhard Deutsch, vice president and general manager of Corning Optical Fiber and Cable, said in a statement.

Corning has more than 4,000 employees in North Carolina, in both cable manufacturing and life sciences. It is also building a new headquarters for the cable business, off I-485 in northwest Charlotte. That operation is expected to relocate to Charlotte from Hickory next year and could eventually employ up to 650 people.

An optical fiber cable manufacturing factory in Cairo—co-established by China’s Hengtong Optic-Electric Co., Ltd., and Egypt’s HitekNOFAL Group—was inaugurated March 6 with the official opening of the plant.

Per reports from media and company websites, the new operation, called HitekNOFAL Hengtong Optix, is the first Egyptian-Chinese joint venture specialized in manufacturing fiber optic cables and accessories. The plant is located in the Bader Industrial City, which is in the northeast section of the Cairo governate. The 33,000-sq-m plant, highly automated, has an annual production capacity of more than one million km of fiber. “(HitekNOFAL) aims to cover the needs of the Egyptian market of fiber cables and plans to export to African markets by mid-2019, in parallel with the increasing production capacity of the factory. A second plant is also to be built, with the total cost over the next three years estimated at $30 million. The company plans to reach 80% of local components in the cable manufacturing process by 2021.”

Egyptian market’s demand for optical cables is growing year by year, and its main resource at present still depends on imports, said HitekNOFAL CEO Mohammed Nofal. He noted that over the past four years, Telecom Egypt has been working on replacing copper wires in all Egyptian governorates with fiber optic wires. As of June 2017, the company had replaced 40%, but will need much fiber to meet its goals. “Nevertheless, the co-founded factory with HENGTONG is expected to satisfy about 80% of the domestic needs within this year and achieve export in the middle of 2019.”

A report in Xinhuanet cited HitekNOFAL Marketing Manager Randa Tawfiq as saying that a key goal is to supply the “core,” which is the most difficult part in the process. The manufacture of this part of the cables is limited and is only carried out by a limited number of companies around the world and the company seeks to transfer this advanced (preform) technology to Egypt.” The factory will also manufacture micro-trenching cables, which is relatively new cable technology that allows the cable to be laid without extensive road digging.

Attending the inauguration was Yasser ElKady, Egypt’s Minister of Communications and Information Technology. Following the opening, he said that the government’s strategic plan to develop Egypt’s telecom infrastructure considers optical fiber cables an essential pillar.
Mohamed Nofal, chairman of HitekNOFAL Solutions, noted that his company has more than 30 years of experience in the field of telecom and cable solutions. The company’s goal is to train Egyptian workers to manufacture optical fiber cables in partnership with the Hengtong Group to cover domestic demand and exports abroad.

Corning Incorporated announced that the company has officially opened a new cable manufacturing facility in Newton, North Carolina, as part of the company’s expansion plans to meet growing worldwide demand for its optical fiber and cable.

A press release said that the facility, which will employ more than 200 people, is part of Corning’s previously announced plan to invest more than $250 million in its optical fiber, cable, and solutions manufacturing facilities. In North Carolina, Corning is expanding its fiber manufacturing facility near Concord and its cable facilities in Winston-Salem and Hickory, in addition to opening the Newton plant.

“Network operators around the world are challenged to meet exploding demand for high-speed connectivity and data storage,” said Clark S. Kinlin, executive vice president, Corning Optical Communications. “We are adding this cable capacity to help ensure reliable supply of the world’s highest performing optical cable in a growing market. This world-class facility was commissioned in record time, a feat that would not have been possible without our long-serving Catawba County employees, or the support of state and local leaders here in North Carolina.”



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