National Lambda Rail, Internet2 Merger is Off. Again.

[qi:004] National Lambda Rail and Internet2 can’t seem to decide whether they want to merge or not. The two entities that oversee stupendously fast networks have once again called off their proposed merger.

Don’t hate me for saying so, but not again(!) The two groups discussed a tie-up between August 2005 and June 2006, but nothing came of those talks. Then in March, they surprised everyone and unveiled merger plans — and it seemed like this time they were serious.

The combined entity could have, in theory, formed the basis of the next generation of very high-speed backbone and helped foster a new wave of innovation, in addition to acting as a backbone for community and municipal networks.

Well, not quite. In the end, the NLR board of directors wouldn’t sign off on the two joining forces. And this after the board, on Aug. 30, unanimously voted to continue to pursue the merger with Internet2.

Despite that, they couldn’t get past three main points of contention: the transfer of assets to the merged entity, its commitment to research, and the role of regional network groups under the new organization. From the looks of it, the Internet2 team was a little bit more flexible, but the very nature of NLR prevented the merger from going forward.

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