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Juniper to Boost Enterprise Networking With Mist Buyout

Zacks Equity Research

Recently, Juniper Networks, Inc. JNPR announced that it has entered into an agreement to acquire Mist Systems for approximately $405 million. Based in Cupertino, CA, Mist is a leader in cloud-managed wireless networks, powered by artificial intelligence (AI).

The acquisition will likely boost the computer network equipment maker’s enterprise networking portfolio by integrating Mist’s Wireless LAN platform with Juniper’s wired LAN, SD-WAN and security solutions. The integration will provide unparalleled user and IT experiences.

The buyout, which is expected to close in fiscal second quarter, is subject to customary closing conditions. It will augment the company’s presence in the fast growing cloud-managed segment of the wireless networking market. The transaction is likely to be marginally dilutive to fiscal 2019 non-GAAP earnings per share and accretive to the same in fiscal 2020.

Furthermore, this deal will allow Juniper to enhance cloud-based management and AI-driven visibility across enterprise network to offer state-of-the-art software-defined solution for simplifying operations, improving user experience and minimizing total cost of ownership. The strategic move testifies that Juniper is focused on adding advanced solutions to complement its portfolio, drive cloud transition while accelerating enterprise growth.

The company anticipates its business to grow on the back of product portfolio strength led by coveted solution offerings for enterprise customers. Moreover, Juniper has made significant changes to its go-to-market structure to better align its sales strategies to each of its core customer verticals.

It is on the verge of introducing several new products over the next few quarters, which are expected to further strengthen its competitive position across the service provider, cloud and enterprise market. Offerings include new MX line card that will strengthen its ability to capitalize on carrier 5G initiatives, new 400 gig platform that will improve its ability to capture data centric footprint particularly in the cloud. It has also made new enhancements to its Contrail Enterprise Multicloud platform that will help its mid-to-large enterprise customers transition to a multicloud world with increased simplicity and reduced cost.

Juniper is also planning to introduce new silicon photonics capability that would improve its competitive position. It believes that the 400-gig upgrade cycle, 5G deployment and enterprise multicloud initiatives hold huge opportunities where it is well positioned to benefit over the next several years.

Driven by proper execution of operational objectives, shares of Juniper have recorded an average gain of 4.1% against the industry’s decline of 0.6% over the past year.




Juniper currently has a Zacks Rank #4 (Sell). Better-ranked stocks in the industry include Harris Corporation HRS, Motorola Solutions, Inc. MSI and Comtech Telecommunications Corp. CMTL, each carrying a Zacks Rank #2 (Buy). You can see the complete list of today’s Zacks #1 Rank (Strong Buy) stocks here.

Harris has a long-term earnings growth expectation of 8%.

Motorola has a long-term earnings growth expectation of 8%.

Comtech has a long-term earnings growth expectation of 5%.

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