Airvana focuses 100% on small cells after selling EV-DO business to Ericsson

Ericsson (NASDAQ:ERIC), which was slapped with a preliminary injunction back in March over its sale of EV-DO hardware that was allegedly based on designs from Airvana Network Solution, has bought Airvana's EV-DO business.

Both companies announced the sale but did not disclose sales price. Ericsson said the transaction was structured as a stock purchase.

Airvana is better known today for making femtocells but was a pioneer in EV-DO networking technology, which enables data transmission in a CDMA wireless network. It said the sale of its EV-DO macro cell radio access network business unit does not impact its small cell business unit and will, in fact, enable the company to focus all of its efforts on the expanding small cell segment of the wireless industry.

"With over a million units deployed in customer homes and offices, Airvana has the experience and technology to lead this exciting market," said Randy Battat, the company's chairman.

For its part, Ericsson said the acquisition "ensures long-term support for Ericsson`s CDMA customers," and noted 38 Airvana employees have joined Ericsson.

"We recognize that CDMA will continue to be an important technology in the operators` networks," said Paul Challoner, Ericsson vice president and head of its CDMA Radio product.

Now that they have kissed and made up, Ericsson and Airvana expect to jointly seek dismissal of the lawsuit filed by Airvana on Feb. 8, 2012, against Ericsson in the Supreme Court of the State of New York.

The lawsuit concerned Ericsson's sale of EV-DO hardware that was allegedly based on Airvana designs. Airvana alleged breach of contract, trade secret misappropriation and unfair competition in the suit, which sought $330 million in damages from Ericsson.

In a 41-page ruling issued on March 19, 2013, the judge overseeing the case ruled that Airvana had demonstrated "a likelihood of success on the merits" in its claim for breach of contract and issued a preliminary injunction barring the Swedish infrastructure vendor "from using, operating, testing or deploying certain Airvana-based EV-DO hardware unless it is executing software that is licensed from Airvana."

For more:
- see this Ericsson release
- see this Airvana release
- see this Mobile World Live article

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