Comcast Invests in Municipal Wi-Fi Company BelAir

BelAir Networks, which makes equipment for municipal broadband networks, has completed Series C funding led by Comcast Interactive Capital, the financing arm of Comcast Corp., and McLean Watson Capital.

This recent round means BelAir now has raised $44 million, says Phil Belanger, vice president of marketing. Existing investors T-Mobile Venture Fund, JPMorgan Partners, VenGrowth Capital Partners Inc., and BDC Venture Capital also took part in the Series C financing.

Comcast already has done some smaller deployments with BelAir; Belanger could only speculate on what Comcast plans to do now that it has invested $20 million in the Canada-based company.

In a statement, Deepak Sindwani, principal of Comcast Interactive Capital and the newest member of BelAir’s board of directors, noted, “BelAirs modular, carrier-class architecture and scalability are well positioned to address the needs of multiple customer segments, including those of the cable market. We have been impressed with BelAir’s channel partners and customer traction.

The cash infusion from Comcast is interesting, given that the company had teamed with AT&T Corp. on what turned out to be a failed bid to build Philadelphia’s forthcoming Wi-Fi network. EarthLink won that contract.

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