£500,000 investment for Comtek Network Systems UK as the Deeside business delivers on acquisition of Silicon Valley technology

Deputy Fund Manager

Established in a garden shed in 1989 by the current Chief Executive Askar Sheibani, Comtek Network Systems UK Limited has grown from a one-man-band computer repair business to a pan-European provider of repairs, spares and support to the telecoms, datacoms, and network service industry.

Based on the Deeside Enterprize Zone, Comtek now employs 70 people and will use the £500,000 from the Development Bank of Wales to invest in the manufacturing of cutting edge fibre optic transmission products. Up to nine new highly-skilled jobs will be created in Deeside as a result of the investment.

The latest funding round follows a £6 million acquisition of the intellectual property and trademarks of Sorrento Networks Inc in 2015.

Despite the strength of the product, Sillicon Valley based Sorrento Networks had gone into administration. Comtek rescued the technology  by acquiring the IPR, manufacturing  rights and the research and development.  All activity has been transferred to the UK and Comtek are now able to offer the cutting-edge technology from Sorrento to the global market. Existing clients are mainly telecom carriers and data centre providers across North America and Europe.

Chief Executive Askar Sheibani , who describes  himself as a serial entrepreneur, said: “Successful business depends upon strong leadership, a can-do attitude and readily available finance. Our area has enormous potential with lots of high growth, high tech organisations that are thriving. The Development Bank of Wales is at the heart of this and we are truly grateful for their support.

“Rhodri Evans, our adviser has been amazingly helpful and we have been consistently impressed by how proactive and well informed he is. This investment will enable us to further develop our product offering whilst also creating further highly skilled and highly paid jobs in Deeside.

“We are very proud to have brought the market-defining Sorrento brand under Welsh ownership, restoring to the UK a lineage traceable back to the invention of data transmission over optic fibre at STL Labs, Harlow, where Kao and Hocking published their definitive paper in 1962.”

Rhodri Evans, Regional Manager for the Development Bank of Wales added: “Comtek has grown into one of the most widely recognised companies across the region with sites in the UK, Holland, Germany, Turkey and the US.

“The core business continues to perform very well and is trading successfully in the UK and Europe as one of fastest growing multi-vendor IT and telecoms repair service providers. By locating in an Enterprise Zone, they have benefited from bespoke support and a reduced interest rate on our loans by up to 2%. This makes a big difference and will help Comtek to further develop products which can be sold to both the existing customer base and new users. We wish them every success.”

Funding for the deal came from the Wales Business Fund, part-funded by the European Regional Development Fund through the Welsh Government.