Belden reveals why it bought Miranda

Now that its acquisition of Miranda Technologies is complete (on July 27officially), Belden took time at IBC to reveal why it “jumped” at the chance to buy the supplier of signal distribution and display technologies.

Compared to other such acquisitions, this one happened relatively fast — a mere four months from initial discussions to closing the deal. Strath Goodship, former Miranda CEO who will now continue to lead the Miranda business (and retain the brand name) under Belden, said he was pleasantly surprised to see that several companies expressed interest. Miranda currently generates about $200 million a year in worldwide sales.

The man at Belden who oversaw the acquisition, Denis Suggs, executive vice president for the Belden Americas Group, said Belden is now a $2 billion business, founded in 1902. It has a long, rich tradition, having served the broadcast industry since 1932.

Over the last several years, Belden has expanded its business to more than just wire and cable. Since 2007, it has been focused, Suggs said, on building a portfolio of products that “give us an opportunity to be more of a solutions provider in the markets we find to be attractive.”

So, since 2005, Belden grew its cable business to almost $1.4 billion. This includes networking and connectivity business that now does almost $500 million since 2007. One can see why Belden finds the broadcast business attractive.

Suggs said they did that focusing on several key growth markets, including broadcast.

"We felt like it was important to continue to build upon our dominant market position in broadcast cable,” he said.

In 2009, Belden acquired Telecast Fiber Systems, a supplier of fiber conversion products for ENG and venue infrastructures. In 2011, it acquired ICM Corporation, a broadcast connectivity company and the broadcast networking part of Thomas & Betts.

“So, over the last three years, we have grown what was a $50 million wire and cable broadcast business to an almost $300 million broadcast business,” Suggs said. “We look forward to growing in this space even more over time.”

He said the growth of emerging markets like India, China and Brazil caught their attention when considering the purchase of Miranda Technologies.

“We see that, given our global footprint, to be a tremendous opportunity for us, in light of the portfolio we’ve built," Suggs said. "The acquisition of Miranda, we believe, accelerates that opportunity for us as a corporation.”

Suggs said Miranda has a strong and healthy business.

"When we looked at the number of opportunities available to us, Miranda jumped out at us as the number one opportunity to further expand our presence in this market," he said. "Its growth profile has been phenomenal over the past five years. The management team has done an outstanding job of making it what it is today, and we believe what it can be going forward.”

He added, “The combination of Belden and Miranda gives us a leadership position in the industry and greater reach across a customer base that we both participate in. So, we believe that we’ll be able to bring more value to a common set of customers, create an opportunity to drive customer penetration and be more of a partner to those customers as we move forward."

In the near term, both companies will focus on integrating Telecast Fiber Systems’ manufacturing, which now works out of Worcester, MA, into Miranda’s Quebec, Canada-based manufacturing facilities. Telecast’s products will now become a product line within the Miranda portfolio, but the Telecast brand will remain (at least for the near term). The Worcester office will remain for sales and service calls, sharing space with Belden’s Mohawk Cable business.

Goodship said there is “surprisingly little overlap” in products between the two companies. In fact, Miranda had attempted to produce fiber conversion products several years ago “and failed,” according to Goodship. Telecast also has a loyal following among the mobile truck community. The existing Telecast logo and support materials will be relinquished.

“We’re excited about the future of the broadcast space,” Suggs said, “and we’re excited about other potential acquisition opportunities that Miranda had on their product list, that they now have the resources of a $2 billion corporation to make it happen.”

Suggs said he hopes to see the company’s broadcast business — which now includes Miranda — to grow 4 to 6 percent year over year out of Miranda over the next four years.

“We believe we can surpass that projected overall market growth quite easily by penetrating new markets and leverages our shared customer base,” he said.

At IBC, Miranda staged a live demonstration of remote acquisition using a Telecast Copperhead fiber transceiver sending signals through a Miranda NVision router, replicating a real-world application of both companies synergy. Both companies’ sales force will also be combined. Miranda also showed a new NVision 8140 small format router for the mobile production market.