Broadlink Launches $10M Second Round to Unwire Telecom

Warren Linney is back in the game.

Just two years removed from selling off his Wireless Plus Inc. empire, Linney is now looking for venture capitalists to help load customers onto his newest telecommunications endeavor, Broadlink Communications Inc.

The company is marketing a $10 million deal that, if successful, would be its second round of venture funding and a probable mezzanine link to an initial public offering. Broadlink netted $5 million from its initial transaction.

Broadlink provides wireless digital subscriber line (DSL) service to residential and business communities through an ISP-neutral system. What separates the wireless system from typical DSL, beyond the lack of tangled cords, is that it can operate anywhere. Cable service is technically unavailable in up to 30% of the market.

“Not only can we go anywhere,” Linney said, “but we are able to price the same as traditional DSL because our infrastructure is half the cost of most DSL systems.”

He also cited the use of a proprietary Linux operating system on a single board computer and point-to-multipoint utilization as some of Broadlink’s key distinguishing characteristics.

“They’re really onto something,” said a source considering the deal last week. “The technology seems very sound, they have a delivery system that makes them competitive with cable, and they have a core management team that has been successfully involved in other ventures.”

While Broadlink is currently available only in the California communities of San Francisco, Santa Rosa and San Rafael. Linney said the company is planning an East Coast expansion that will begin in Washington D.C. He added that the final goal is to operate in 100 top urban markets.

“Wireless DSL is really a cash cow,” said Linney. “It only costs $800,000 to wire a whole city with 10 [wireless modem bank] sites.”