UK private LTE provider Quortus targets US and Japan with fresh funding, new portfolio
Private LTE and 5G provider Quortus has secured investment from US-based edge analytics firm Communications Systems Inc (CSI) and UK-based telecoms solutions provider cellXion to drive sales in North America, Europe, and Japan, as the market for private industrial networking gathers pace.
Quortus, based in Camberley in the UK, offers virtualised mobile core solutions for private LTE and 5G. It claims supply contracts with tier-one mobile operators, as well as “new entrants leveraging new 5G-aligned technologies”. The company identifies also smart cities and industrial operatives as key candidates.
The size of its new funding has not been revealed. At the same time, the company has launched a “comprehensive range” of new networking and edge-compute products for deployment of private LTE (4G) and 5G networks, as well as for private 2G and 3G setups. Further detail on its new products is also scant.
But the company has said its solutions work for customers seeking to deploy from “single-figure user counts to millions of connections”. The firm is targeting Industry 4.0 applications “across a wide variety of vertical sectors including manufacturing, retail and utilities”.
Outside of its home market, the company wants to grow sales of private networks in the US and Japan, in particular. Quortus is involved in the private networking market in Japan, already. It is engaged with MulteFire, enabling LTE in unlicensed spectrum bands, and lined up a year ago for the MulteFire Alliance in Japan to showcase the technology in the 1.9 GHz and 5GHz bands.
The 1.1 version of the MulteFire specification included support for the 1.9 GHz band, referred to in Japan as sXGP spectrum. The standardisation of sXGP in Japan was completed in January 2018 as the first unlicensed LTE in Band 39; the national XGP Forum has thrown its weight behind the MulteFire push as well.
Quortus also has a multi-country agreement with Japanese firm Fujitsu for the re-sale of cellular core technology for private LTE. Fujitsu will deploy Quortus’ core network products as part of its range of private LTE solutions for operators and industrial operations.
Mark Bole, chief executive at Quortus, said: “These announcements mark a major milestone for Quortus. We have just enjoyed a successful year, signing long-term contracts with some of the biggest technology companies in the world. We now have a fantastic opportunity, working in close strategic partnership with CSI and cellXion, to grow our position in private wireless network solutions.
“We are perfectly placed to capitalise on the growing global demand and spectrum availability for private wireless networks and have the product capabilities, working with our channel partner ecosystem, to deliver significant competitive advantage to organisations in our target markets.”
Roger Lacey, chief executive at CSI, said: “This strategic partnership with Quortus and cellXion will provide our mutual clients with a range of comprehensive solutions designed to help build their mobile edge capabilities as well as supporting a wide array of industrial IoT initiatives.”
Separately, Quortus was selected by US telecoms company Council Rock late last year for its mobile core network, in support of its national smart grid TELiG Platform for power and utility companies to provide smarter metering, intelligent distribution, lower latency and IoT application support.
Council Rock’s edge-based computing platform can run third-party utility-specific applications such as legacy protocol conversion and Quortus’ own distributed packet core network.
Bole said, “New capabilities and intelligence in smart grids is a good example of how our LTE wireless technology enables a customer to build efficient private networks to share information, automate activities, smart monitor, and run remote operations without huge operational costs and capital expenditure.”
Quortus is involved in the UK government’s AutoAir project, led by Airspan Networks, to develop 5G cellular technology for connected and autonomous vehicles. Arm, Blu Wireless and McLaren are also involved. 5G technologies developed as part of AutoAir will be used in the validation and development of connected and autonomous vehicles at the UK’s Millbrook testing and validation ground. The project will also accelerate the deployment of 5G cellular networks and autonomous vehicles in the UK, driving early implementation of these key emerging technologies.