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Heard on the Street Index

Issue: August 2002

By: Frank Bisbee


Headline News
 

Featured Story

 

Bits n' pieces

Question: How do you spell economy? Answer: C-A-R-W-R-E-C-K, with no airbag. Is this the bottom? Yes, according to some experts and some earning reports, which suggest the telecommunications industry's crash dive has ended. Unfortunately, it's hard to spot the real earning reports from the science fiction pieces issued by several telecom giants. Revenues are flat or slightly falling, costs are still being cut, and the realism of a long cold winter ahead is just setting in. The recovery is likely to start maybe next year?? Or the year after?? Overall datacom is down between 40 - 60% and not likely to bounce back for many of the weaker players. This will truly be a "weeding out" process.

Our need for distributed information is an addictive process that will not stop because the economy is sick. Information Systems continue to evolve and the churn of MAC's (Moves, Adds, and Changes) shows no sign of reduction. The healthier sectors for IT growth continue to be the GEMS.

Show Me The Money!

So where is the money? You don't have to look far to find the GEMS. That's right, the GEMS - Government, Educational, and Medical Sectors. These are all still experiencing very healthy growth. Funding programs in all three of these sectors are fully functional.

We have spent countless hours looking into these industry sectors. We've found lots of quietly smiling faces. Vendors that already enjoy the fruits of these sectors aren't talking. Heck, they aren't even whispering. They quietly shuffle back and forth to the bank.

If you think that uncovering these opportunities requires a major mining effort, then you haven't even tried. Start with the Internet. Check out the industry organizations that describe members of the GEM sector - including these GEMS:

  • NASTD - National Association of State Telecommunications Directors: www.nastd.org
  • ACUTA - The Association for Communications Technology Professionals in Higher Education www.acuta.org
  • HIMSS - Healthcare Information and Management Systems Society www.himss.org

Contractors: Get busy on building additional revenue streams, team up with a distributor that speaks your language and do what you do best. Make money the old fashioned way, with quality, safety, and reliability at a fair and reasonable price. It really works.

Several areas of concern continue to bubble to the surface. The removal of abandoned cable and who pays is still on the table. The possibility of "Permanent Plenum" cable looms on the horizon. And, verification of CAT 6 and all of its subsequent machinations and revisions challenges the contractors and users to find reliable test equipment (and software).

Good news, for dependable and accurate diagnostics, Fluke Networks and Microtest joined forces to offer more testing solutions than ever before from single source. For many contractors, this was the merger of the Top Two. For CAT 5e, CAT 6, and beyond, the two best certification testing tools seem to be the OMNIScanner ® 2 and the DSP 4000 series. These are the only ones on the market that offer full advanced digital technology merged with complete documentation software (Scanlink and CableManager ). To get more information on Microtest and Fluke Network SuperVision Solutions (tm), contact your distributor or go to www.flukenetworks.com .

Cabling can and should be a cumulative asset. Design your needs correctly, specify quality and safety, supervise and verify the installation, then record the assets. This means cable records and proper labeling. Now you have a reusable asset.

Cabling is a crucial element of the information network for the business, the structure, or the home. It seems ridiculous when we see the amount of wasted dollars going into cabling and re-cabling without considering planning, selecting, and managing the network as an asset. Almost without any exception, the lowest price or bid is not the best deal. Caveat Emptor – Buyer Beware.

Today many organizations favor the design and build process over a straight bid scenario. With a bid job, usually there are two losers: The Buyer and The Seller. The buyer doesn't get the best value because the spec was too limited. And the seller "under- prices" an unfamiliar design.


Safety Wins NFPA Nod Over Special Interests

NFPA Upholds "Listed Limited Combustible" Plenum Cable Requirements in the New NFPA 90A 2002 Edition

NFPA (National Fire Protection Agency) upholds new listing for "Limited Combustible" Plenum Cable. This gives buyers an option for an improved safety cable. Kudos to the NFPA Standards Council that rejected a request from special interest groups to eliminate this option from the new 2002 NFPA 90A Standard.

Standards Council also directed NFPA 90A to produce a single minimum acceptable plenum cable performance level in the next NFPA 90A revision cycle (likely for the 2005 or 2006 Edition).

Currently in the new 2002 NFPA 90A Edition, Noncombustible and Limited Combustible plenum cables are required; and Combustible Exception plenum cables are permitted (but not required).

The NFPA 90A Technical Committee will re-consider what is now necessary based on the increasing use and accumulation of plenum cables, non-removal loopholes, unique-use applications, and on startling new NRC/ASHRAE and BRE real-scale cable fire research findings. (NRC = National Research Council Canada, ASHRAE = American Society of Heating and Air Conditioning Engineers, BRE = British Research Establishment)

Also in the next revision, Standards Council have asked that the term "Limited Combustible" be replaced by specific tests or performance characteristics. In many ways, the new UL designation of FHC 25/50 for Limited Combustible plenum cables begins to do just that. This new performance designation will allow easier enforcement in numerous regional and local Codes that don't now use the term "Limited Combustible", but do specify the FHC 25/50 requirements.

Overall, NFPA has supported major progress to date in NFPA 90A and provided specific clarifications to help the W&C industry develop and identify safer new FHC 25/50 plenum cables; made from safer 100% Limited Combustible materials as now defined in NFPA 220.

http://www.nfpa.org/PDF/02-78dLD.pdf?src=nfpa


ACS appoints Powell to management post


ACS Industries Inc. (www.acsindustries.com) has appointed Dick Powell, RCDD national sales and marketing manager for its Adirondack Wire & Cable/US Fiber Optics division, located in Woonsocket, RI.


Powell is immediate past president of BICSI (www.bicsi.org) and has been a member of that organization's board of directors since 1994. He most recently was national training and business development manager for Krone (www.krone.com). Previously, he held sales and engineering positions for contracting organizations, including more than 20 years with the regulated and nonregulated BellSouth engineering groups.

Adirondack Wire & Cable manufactures copper wiring harnesses and molded cable assemblies. US Fiber Optics manufactures passive fiber-optic components.

http://cim.pennnet.com/home.cfm


SuperCAT1000 & SuperCat1000+ Exceeds Newly Approved Standards

Draka Comteq’s SuperCAT1000 and SuperCAT1000+ cables meet or exceed the recently approved TIA/EIA-568-B.2-1 standard for Category 6 cabling.

The new Category 6 standard specifies requirements for 100-ohm balanced twisted-pair cables, connecting hardware, patch cords, channels and permanent links, and provides test procedures for laboratory and field performance verification over the frequency range of 1 to 250 MHz. Because Category 6 supports positive power sum attenuation to crosstalk (PSACR) margins up to 200 MHz, this new cabling system offers double the bandwidth of

Category 5e cabling and vastly improved signal-to-noise margins.

Draka Comteq’s SuperCAT1000 and SuperCAT1000+ Category 6, 4-pair UTP, have been developed to support next generation applications operating at 2.4 Gb/s utilizing a 250 MHz bandwidth. “SuperCAT1000+ (enhanced Category 6) was developed to go beyond the standard test requirements of 250 MHz and has been is tested to operate at 600 MHz to provide even greater headroom a more robust cable for the future,” states Tom Grzysiewicz, product engineer/designer for Draka Comteq. “In fact, through Both the SuperCAT 1000 and SuperCAT 1000+ are third-party testing verified to TIA/EIA-568-B.2-1, but the SuperCAT1000+ has proven better Attenuation, and much improved NEXT (Near End Crosstalk), power sum NEXT, Return Loss, ELFEXT (Equal Level Far End Crosstalk) and power sum ELFEXT, “ adds Grzysiewicz.

The Category 6 standard also includes cable and connecting hardware balance recommendations for improved electromagnetic compatibility performance. “The Gold Series channel solution from Draka-Molex Cabling Systems, the strategic technology alliance between Draka Comteq and Molex Premise Networks, has proven to exceed the standard’s requirements for a fully warranted Category 6 structured cabling solution,” states Jeff Mahall, Director of Marketing for Draka Comteq. “The Draka-Molex Gold Series has a maximum system test frequency of 600 MHz and a 19.0 dB insertion loss at 100 MHz,” he notes. “Because the new standard recognizes that Category 6 is backward compatible with Categories 3, 5 and 5e, Draka-Molex connectivity products are compatible with all cable classifications,” he adds.

According to TIA TR-42 Committee Chair Bob Jensen, the publication of the category 6 standard represents a milestone in the history of commercial building cabling specification. "Category 6 facilitates data throughput previously unachievable over balanced twisted-pair cabling. TIA and the ATM Forum have already published gigabit applications standards to operate over Category 6 cabling. We anticipate applications groups to begin development of protocols supporting even higher throughput over Category 6 cabling," he states.

“To stay ahead of the competition in the datacom market, we’ve responded with the investment of high-end manufacturing equipment, which allows us to produce the highest quality of enhanced Category cables today, guarantee their performance and address advanced technologies, such as Category 5e, 6 and proposed Category 7,” states Bill Dungan, Group Vice President for Draka Comteq. “In addition, the Draka Comteq category cables are specially formulated with 100% fluoropolymer insulation to produce vivid colors for plenum installations making this cable much more conducive for installers to differentiate between the pairs, making it faster and easier to terminate,” notes Peter Kunigonis, Product Marketing Manager for Datacom Copper Products, Draka Comteq.

About Draka Comteq

Draka Holding, N.V., headquartered in Amsterdam, is comprised of 60 operating companies in 25 countries in Europe, America and Asia. As members of Draka Comteq, the worldwide marketing communications cable alliance under Draka Holding N.V., Chromatic Technologies, Inc. and Helix/HiTemp Cables, Inc. tap into focused research, development, sales, marketing and manufacturing to provide total solutions for worldwide communication customers.

www.drakausa.com www.drakacomteq.com


Avaya to Cut 2,500 Jobs

Communications equipment maker Avaya Inc.(Basking Ridge, NJ) on Friday said it was cutting an additional 2,500 jobs and expected to take a $150 million charge in its fiscal fourth quarter related to the job cuts, real estate consolidations and certain asset impairments.

Since Avaya was spun off from Lucent Technologies Inc. in October 2000, the company has cut about 7,200 jobs or 24 percent of its work force. The latest round of job cuts brings the company's total employees down to 19,100.

Avaya had warned analysts earlier this week that it planned to cut more jobs as corporate customers continue to tightly curtail spending. The company had said then it would take a charge of $150 million to $250 million in the fourth quarter.

The Basking Ridge, New Jersey-based firm said the charge was at the low end of its original range because fewer actions on its real estate portfolio were necessary at this time. It said about $125 million to $135 million of the restructuring charge will be in cash, and it expected to generate about $300 million a year in savings.

Avaya said restructuring initiatives were already under way.

Of the $150 million charge, Avaya said about $68 million was related to the job cuts, $60 million to $65 million for real estate consolidations and lease terminations, and $15 million for certain asset impairments.

Avaya, a provider of voice and data networks, earlier this week posted a larger than expected fiscal third-quarter loss and said it expected fiscal fourth-quarter revenue to decline from the third quarter.

www.avaya.com


BusinessWeek magazine gives Graybar honors

BusinessWeek magazine recently ranked distributor Graybar the number 3 privately owned information-technology company, in the magazine's annual ranking of the world's public and private IT companies. The magazine ranked Graybar fourth in the same category last year.

"This recognition underscores the fact that Graybar has the power and stability of a big company and the integrity and drive of an employee-owned business," said Robert A. Reynolds, Graybar's chairman, president, and chief executive officer.

In announcing the accolades, Graybar pointed to a recently launched program in which the company will spend $90 million over the next three years in IT infrastructure to improve services to its customers and its suppliers.

"Our ... information-technology systems, combined with our logistics capabilities and regional zone warehouses, are raising the bar on performance and value for our customers and suppliers," Reynolds continued. "We understand the importance of not only selling the

best technology, but also using it for the benefit of our customers."

http://www.cable-install.com

www.graybar.com


Draka Comteq’s MaxCap Multimode Meets Approved Standards for 10Gb/s Applications

Draka Comteq announces that MaxCap, a low-cost 50 µm multimode fiber optic cable designed for high-bandwidth and high-speed LAN (Local Area Networks) and SAN (Storage Area Networks) backbone applications now meets the newly approved TIA/EIA-492AAAC specification as well as IEEE 802.3ae, the first Ethernet standard that is based on an optical media-only technology, and complies with the new addendum for TIA/EIA568-B.3-1 that sets the performance parameters for this cabled fiber.

TIA-492AAAAC is a detailed specification for a graded-index 50/125µm multimode fiber that enables end users and manufacturers of fiber optic cable to specify a high-bandwidth fiber optimized for enhanced performance at 850 nm. The new addendum TIA/EIA 568-B.3-1 supports the transmission of 10 gigabits per second data rates up to 300 meters using this standardized fiber.

“The new addendum was developed in conjunction with the emerging 10Gb/s applications in Ethernet and fibre channel so that this fiber could support these applications in commercial building cabling networks,” states Bob Jensen, chair of the TIA TR-42. “Because this fiber also supports the applications available today such as FDDI (fiber distributed data interface and Gigabit Ethernet, it is a natural extension of the recognized fiber types in the TIA-568-B.3 and TIA-569-B.1,” he adds.

“With the exploding demands for high bandwidth systems for data and telecommunications, Draka Comteq‘s MaxCap, a 50 µm multimode fiber, which supports 10 Gb/s applications over 300 m, becomes an alternative to deploying an expensive singlemode system in the backbone,” states Rob Gilberti, Jr., RCDD, Director of Marketing for Specialty Fiber Cables. “Because it also supports backwards compatibility to legacy systems, upgrading now becomes a cost-effective alternative to replacing expensive hardware such as routers and hubs,” he adds.

Traditional short-reach multimode fiber has been maintained in the IEEE 802.3ae 10 GbE standard and utilizes 850 nm VCSEL sources. MaxCap cable is optimized for 850 nm laser launch produced by means of the PCVD (Plasma-activated Chemical Vapor Deposition) process.

"The MaxCap 10 Gb/s MMF is the solution that bridges 1 Gb/s capable horizontal cabling systems based on ordinary Category 5e or 6 copper products with 10- 40 Gb/s backbone systems in the WAN (Wide Area Networks) and MAN (Metropolitan Area Networks)," states Harry van der Meer, RCDD, Director of Technology.

"Any Draka Comteq cable can be produced with MaxCap fiber in all jacket constructions -- tight buffer or loose tube -- and can be installed in inter-building applications via duct, direct buried or aerial; or inside the building in trays, riser shafts, wiring closets or plenums," states Ed Wiencek, Engineering Manager, Optical Fiber Products. "This new technology also eliminates the need for expensive mode-conditioning patch cords," he adds.

www.drakausa.com www.drakacomteq.com


Belden Announces Appointment of Brian O'Connell to Vice President of Sales And Marketing

Belden Electronics Division (Richmond, IN), a leading manufacturer of electronic cable products, announces the recent promotion of Brian O'Connell to Vice President, Sales and Marketing for the Americas Operation. The Belden Electronics Division has extensive activities in both North and South America and is widely recognized as the premier brand in the industry. Mr. O'Connell will report directly to the division president, Mr. Peter Wickman.

Mr. O'Connell originally joined Belden in July 1999 as Vice President and General Manager of Belden Electronics Division's Alpha Wire Company operations. In this role, he was responsible for all Alpha Wire sales, marketing, manufacturing and distribution activities.

Prior to joining Belden, Mr. O'Connell served as vice president for the Industrial Business Unit of C&M Corporation in Wauregan, Connecticut, where he was responsible for the unit's sales and marketing, design and manufacturing efforts. In addition, he managed the creation and execution of their strategic plan relative to all areas of commercial development.

Mr. O'Connell holds a B.S. in Design Engineering from Northern Illinois University and has an Executive Education Certificate from Wharton School of Business for Strategic Product Development. His professional affiliations include membership with the Robotics Industry Association (RIA), the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE) and the Society of Plastics Engineers (SPE). Mr. O'Connell also has received patents in the United States and Europe for products specific to the factory automation environment.

www.belden.com


“Winning Strategies” were present at the ACUTA 31st annual conference & exhibition

In spite of the dismal news in the economy, the attendance at the ACUTA (The Association for Communications Technology Professionals in Higher Education, Lexington, KY) was close to expectations. Most of the major colleges and universities were represented. The business climate at ACUTA seemed to be upbeat and confident. Most of the vendors that we spoke with were pleased with the attendance and the elevated level of purchasing power. Many major colleges and universities have substantial funds and are looking for good products to enhance their networks. Specifiers, purchasing managers, and decision makers with ample budgets were preparing to make commitments. Datacom cabling, new phone systems, voice recognition, E911, and wireless were represented at the exhibition hall. Excellent educational opportunities were abundant. User groups for various systems provided ideal support. Anybody involved in telecommunications in a college & university environment, would reap great benefits by attending any ACUTA event. Check out their website for hot topics and current trends. www.acuta.org .

We had to opportunity to speak with representatives from Mohawk/CDT cable company and got the latest news on their LEAD-Free cables plus the new CAT 6 and Limited Combustible products. (http://www.mohawk-cdt.com). These are a major step towards enhanced safety and performance for every campus. We interviewed numerous attendees about their cabling specs. Most of the telecom mgrs. said they use independent consultants, or the contractors, to help them specify their cabling requirements. Numerous ACUTA members suggested that ACUTA offer generic cable specifications to assist the members in making the best decisions.

Green is good.

The environmental issues such as hazardous materials (i.e. LEAD) in cabling continue to be an area of concern with many of the colleges and universities. Environmental programs are in place and “Green Procurement” and sustainability are hot topics. We distributed the TURI (Toxics Use Reduction Institute) Univ. of Mass./Lowell - Environmental, Health and Safety Issues in the Coated Wire and Cable Industry report (Technical report No. 51 - April 2002) These reports were gobbled up by everyone who could get their hands on them.

www.turi.org


Avaya Selects Graybar Canada to Distribute SYSTIMAX(R) Structured Cabling Solutions in Ontario

Avaya Inc., a leading global provider of voice and data networks to businesses and the

market leader in structured cabling systems worldwide, announced today that Graybar Canada will distribute Avaya SYSTIMAX(R) Structured Connectivity Solutions (SCS) in Ontario, Canada.

Already a major Avaya distributor for SYSTIMAX(R) SCS and Avaya(TM) Wireless Solutions in the Atlantic Provinces, this new agreement allows Graybar Canada to provide service and support for Avaya's SYSTIMAX SCS product line to Value Added Resellers and enterprise businesses in Ontario.

Avaya recently introduced the SYSTIMAX GigaSPEED(R) XL Solution, the newest addition to the SYSTIMAX SCS family of products. Orders and inventory for SYSTIMAX SCS can now be expedited through Avaya's multi-distribution channel that includes Graybar Canada.

"Our agreement with Avaya is extremely valuable, as it enables Graybar to expand its distribution services and support for structured cabling solutions into Ontario, thereby giving customers a choice in their network purchasing decisions," said Faye Coady, National Manager of Communications and Data, Graybar Canada.

"We chose Graybar to enhance our distribution channel in Ontario on the basis of their proven capabilities in inventory management, value added sales, and quick-turn service," said Bob Kostash, Sales Director, Connectivity Solutions Avaya Canada.

Avaya's SYSTIMAX(R) Structured Connectivity Solutions, the company's premier structured cabling system for commercial applications, are available through a worldwide network of highly skilled BusinessPartners. SYSTIMAX SCS is an open, modular cabling solution, capable of simultaneously carrying data, voice, video and intelligent building management applications. The SYSTIMAX Solutions, including the SYSTIMAX GigaSPEED(R) XL and PowerSUM copper solutions and LazrSPEED(TM) and OptiSPEED(TM) fiber solutions, are backed by an industry-leading 20-year extended product warranty and applications assurance guarantee.

www.avaya.com


Corning Cancels Plans for Oklahoma City Manufacturing Facility

Corning Incorporated (Corning, NY) announced that it has cancelled plans to build an optical fiber manufacturing facility in Oklahoma City, Okla., due to current market conditions in the telecommunications sector.

Impairment charges for the Oklahoma City facility were taken in the second quarter as part of Corning Inc. previously announced plans for aggressive cost reductions across the company.

Corning announced plans to build a fiber manufacturing facility in Oklahoma City in December 2000. In June 2001, Corning announced that it would delay the construction project -- which was less than 10% complete -- for at least 12-18 months in response to changing market conditions.

www.corning.com


AT&T: $12.7 Billion Loss After Charges


Long-distance telephone and cable-television giant AT&T Corp posted a $12.7 billion second-quarter loss after charges to write down the value of some of its assets, and revenues fell as telephone sales and calling volumes dropped.

AT&T and other long-distance telephone companies have struggled against a glut of communications networks, slack demand and increased competition from the Baby Bells. But AT&T showed some signs that the worst may be over. The company said the rate of customers shifting to wireless telephones and electronic mail -- and away from long-distance calls -- had begun to stabilize.

The New York company expects third-quarter earnings, excluding one-time items, to be in the range of 3 cents to 6 cents a share. Wall Street analysts on average expect it to earn 3 cents a share, according to First Call. AT&T also benefited from the financial woes of rivals such as WorldCom Inc. which filed for bankruptcy on Sunday, as customers looked for alternative service providers. Including $13.1 billion in charges for goodwill and franchise impairments, AT&T posted a net loss of $3.49 per share. That compared with a loss of $191 million, or 10 cents a share, a year ago.

AT&T, which plans to sell its cable television business to Comcast Corp. said profit, excluding the one-time items, rose to 7 cents a share, compared with 4 cents a share, a year ago. Analysts expected the company to earn 3 cents a share, according to research firm Thomson First Call.

Revenue fell 6.2 percent to $12.1 billion. The company expects third-quarter revenue to fall at a slightly higher rate than the drop seen in the second-quarter. Shares of AT&T have fallen 47.5 percent so far this year. The company plans a one-for-five reverse stock split later this year to bulk up its stock price.

Sales to residential customers plunged 21.8 percent to $2.91 billion in the second quarter. The company has been hurt as customers shifted to wireless telephones and Internet services, and away from long-distance calls. But AT&T said that the rate of wireless and Internet substitution had begun to stabilize. As a result, it said it expects full-year consumer revenues to decline at the "favorable end" of the previously stated mid-20 percent range.

Sales to businesses dropped 3.8 percent to $6.74 billion as lower long-distance voice sales offset growth in data and Internet services. It said it expects full-year business revenues to drop by 4.5 percent to 5 percent.

AT&T Broadband, the cable TV unit, saw revenues drop 1.5 percent as the number of basic video subscribers declined by about 125,000, primarily due to competition, seasonal service disconnects by customers, and increased apartment vacancies in certain markets.

www.yahoo.com


Corning will lay off 600 workers in North Carolina

Corning Inc., the maker of fiber optic cable, said yesterday that it would cut more than 600 jobs as it scales back its Corning Cable Systems operations and restructures a plant in North Carolina. The cuts are part of a previously announced plan to lay off about 4,000 employees, or 12.5 percent of the global work force, to reduce costs. The cuts will occur in the Corning Cable Systems unit, and through the restructuring of its optical assembly plant in Hickory, N.C. Including the previously announced closing of a plant in Puerto Rico, Corning Cable Systems will have shed 10 percent of its work force in North and South America. Corning is based in Corning, N.Y.


Ortronics Expands Clarity 6 Product Line to Include New Series II Modules, Eight-Port Patch Panels and Enhancements to the Clarity 6 110 Block

Ortronics (New London, CT) is pleased to announce the expansion of Clarity 6, an evolutionary advancement in Category 6 connectivity that was the first completely standards compliant connectivity system in the market today to meet TIA Category 6 component specifications. This groundbreaking line of connectivity products now includes Series II one and two port modules, eight port patch panels and enhanced 110 blocks.

Ortronics new Clarity 6 Series II offering includes one and two port modules that are precisely targeted to the family of Clarity 6 patch cords for optimum performance that is field measurable in the channel. Clarity 6 Series II modules use dual reactance technology to enhance signal-to-noise ratio, providing a nearly transparent signal path.

Clarity 7 Series II modules reflect mechanical improvements, which make it easier to terminate the larger conductors of Category 6 cable. They also include new low emission IDC contacts and utilize a standard termination practice using a 110 impact tool for quick and reliable termination. Clarity 6 Series II one and two port modules offer easy-to-follow universal wiring labels, fit all Series II faceplates and housings, are icon compatible, and include a C6 marking on the jack face. Clarity6 Series II is available in four colors and is backward compatible to Category 5e, 5 and 3.

Ortronics has also expanded the Clarity 6 offering of patch panels to include high-density patch panels with eight-port modules. Clarity 6 patch panels (PHD68 series) are precisely targeted to the Clarity 6 patch cords for optimum performance that is field measurable in the channel. Panel connections use dual reactance technology to enhance signal-to-noise ratio, providing a nearly transparent signal path.

Clarity 6 patch panels include new low emission IDC contacts that support a standard termination practice using a 110 impact tool for quick and reliable termination. A single piece IDC housing is designed to accept larger Category 6 conductors, and easy to follow universal wiring labels are quick, user-friendly and eliminate confusion. Panels are

supplied with labeling for T568B wiring, but can be easily converted to T568A with the simple change of a supplied label. The new Category 6 panels include supplied front labeling fields and rear cable management. Panels are icon compatible and backward compatible to Category 5e, 5 and 3.

Ortronics is also pleased to announce the following enhancements to its offering of Clarity 6 Category 6 110 Block Kits. The ease of using Ortronics Clarity 6 110 blocks has been improved by adding cable feed openings to the base of the blocks for better cable management. This assists with routing larger diameter cables to the punch-down positions.

Clarity 6 110 blocks also now boast an improved designation method, providing labeling locations along both sides of the block in addition to the normal designation between connector rows. This new feature also increases the routing space for cable by lifting the horizontal strip further away from the block.

Lastly, Ortronics has expanded the Clarity 6 Category 6 110 Block family by adding a 48 pair 110 block (in a 50 pair footprint) to the existing line, which includes a 96 pair block (100 pair footprint) and a 288 pair block (300 pair footprint). The use of a signal feedback technique internal to the Category 6 110 block controls cross-talk without compromising impedance, thus allowing Clarity 6 blocks to exceed TIA Category 6 component compliance within the footprint of standard 50, 100 and 300 pair blocks. Clarity 6 110 blocks provide a termination point that is more transparent to the signal for significant improvement in signal-to-noise ratio. Clarity 6 110 Blocks have been third party tested by ETL to meet TIA Category 6 component specifications.

www.ortronics.com

Ortronics Inc., The Performance and Flexibility People, headquartered in New London, Connecticut USA, is a global leader in commercial Category 5e and 6 high performance, high capacity enhanced frequency channels, fiber optic and residential/small commercial structured cabling systems that support today's and tomorrow's multimedia environments. From end-to-end, Ortronics offers the world's most extensive range of connectivity products

including patch panels, interface cords, workstation outlets, raceway systems, cable management systems, 110 cross-connect systems and more. Ortronics offers engineering and technical support, systems planning, training programs and a 25-year extended products warranty and applications assurance warranty program.

Ortronics is ISO9001 Registered and an active member of BICSI, TIA/EIA, ISO and other industry standard groups.


Once again BICSI has teamed up with Cabling Installation & Maintenance magazine to bring you the latest cabling installation information and products!

Join BICSI October 22-24 in Providence, Rhode Island for three full days of in-depth, state-of-the-art educational sessions and workshops, and a variety of cabling installation activities throughout the week. The Cabling Installation Expo 2002 will present the latest technology developments from top vendors.


The Cabling Workshop is 3 full days of sessions and workshops covering such topics as CMP 50 Cable, Cable Conveyance under Data Raised Floors, Ethernet, Estimating, T1 Premises Applications, Paging, Residential Applications, Firestopping, Backboard Layout, Standards, Seismic Considerations, Change Orders, Grounding, Wireless, and more!

The Cabling Installation Expo 2002 will present the latest technology developments and market information on cabling solutions, products, services, and innovations. It's also a great way to network with peers and potential clients. Admittance into the Expo is FREE.

www.bicsi.org


Cable Maker CommScope to Lay Off 250 Workers or About 8 Percent of its Work Force

CommScope Inc. (Hickory, NC) says it will lay off 250 workers -- or about 8 percent of its work force -- as the fiber-optic market remains weak. CommScope reported Monday a net loss of $42.5 million, or 69 cents per share, for last quarter. Last year, it had net income of $6 million, or 11 cents per share, during the same period.

The worker cuts will be mostly among hourly wage employees at its three plants in Catawba County, one in Iredell County and one in Alabama. The company has about 3,125 workers.

Most of CommScope's loss came from its holdings in a fiber-optic maker, OFS BrightWave LLC. CommScope's 18.4 percent share of OFS BrightWave dragged $34.9 million off its earnings.

The bankruptcy protection filing of Adelphia Communications Corp., a major CommScope customer, cut another $12.9 million off its earnings. CommScope has since agreed with Adelphia on payment schedules, the company said.

Without those losses, CommScope says it earned $5.3 million, or 9 cents per share, the company said. Its Local Area Network and wireless sales both increased from the first quarter.

CommScope expects business to remain sluggish, forecasting sales of between $130 million and $145 million this quarter. It had $155 million in sales last quarter.


General Cable Corp - Michael Young Resigns From Board of Directors

General Cable Corporation announced that Michael R. Young, President and Chief Executive Officer and a Director of YORK International Corporation, has submitted his resignation from General Cable's Board of Directors.

Young indicated that he wants to focus his energy full-time on the business of YORK International, which is the largest independent supplier of heating, ventilating, air conditioning and refrigeration products in the U.S.

General Cable, headquartered in Highland Heights, Kentucky, is a leader in the development, design, manufacture, marketing and distribution of copper, aluminum and fiber optic wire and cable products for the communications, energy, industrial and specialty markets. The Company offers competitive strengths in such areas as breadth of product line, brand recognition, distribution and logistics, sales and service and operating efficiency. Communications wire and cable products transmit low-voltage signals for voice, data, video and control applications. Energy cables include low-, medium- and high-voltage power distribution and power transmission products. The Industrial and Specialty Segment is comprised of application-specific cables for uses such as electrical power generation (traditional fuels, alternative and renewable sources, and distributed generation), the oil, gas and petrochemical industries, mining, industrial automation, marine, military and aerospace applications, power applications in the telecommunications industry, and other key industrial segments. www.GeneralCable.com. www.cablenet.com


CFO Swartz To Resign From Troubled Tyco

Tyco International Ltd. said that its chief financial officer, Mark Swartz, who has been a figure in persistent questions about the company's finances and business practices, will resign.

Tyco is struggling to restore investor confidence shaken by months of questions about its complex accounting and the indictment of former chief executive J. Dennis Kozlowski on tax evasion charges.

The announcement, after markets closed, came in a letter to Tyco employees from newly appointed chairman and chief executive Edward D. Breen. Swartz will stay until a new CFO is hired, he wrote. Breen did not set a timetable for the search or elaborate on Swartz's decision.

Breen also announced that Irving Gutin, who was appointed in June to replace Mark Belnick as Tyco's general counsel, is retiring. Gutin also will remain until a successor is found.

Tyco fired Belnick in June after it began investigating his financial dealings at the company. Days later, Tyco sued him, accusing him of failing to disclose $35 million in compensation and loans and concealing from directors the investigation that led to Kozlowski's June 3 resignation.

Belnick and Kozlowski have denied any wrongdoing.

Swartz, 41, has been chief financial officer since 1997, and has been with the company since 1991. He worked closely for a decade with Kozlowski, who was charged in June with evading New York sales taxes on pricey works of art, including paintings by Renoir and Monet.

Swartz was a key player in several weeks of conference calls earlier this year in which Tyco tried to allay fears that it would become the next Enron. But calls for his resignation soon poured in from large shareholders as the Securities and Exchange Commission began reviewing Tyco's finances.

Last year, Swartz received $6.5 million in loans from the company, public filings show. A source, who spoke on condition of anonymity, has said financial transactions involving senior Tyco executives, including Swartz, are being reviewed in an internal company investigation.

Breen's appointment was announced July 25. His first day on the job was Monday.

Breen, whom Tyco lured away from Motorola Inc., said one of his priorities in the next few weeks will be to improve corporate governance at Tyco to reassure investors. Tyco has hired University of Pennsylvania business professor and corporate governance expert Michael Useem to help.

Tyco is based in Bermuda but has its U.S. headquarters in Exeter, N.H. The company, which makes everything from undersea fiber-optic cable to clothes hangers, has 277,000 employees.

www.cablenet.com


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