Comcast's RDK joint venture helps spur acquisition for one firm, new Philly office for another

Tom Paine

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Two recent announcements both involve companies that support Philadelphia-based RDK Management LLC, a joint venture between Comcast, Time Warner Cable and Liberty Global.

Cognizant, the Teaneck, NJ-based systems integration giant, has acquired itaas, an Atlanta-based firm that specializes in testing and integration services for video platforms and applications.

A key aspect of itaas' business is its role in supporting the RDK joint venture. Last fall, itaas was selected by RDK Management LLC to oversee community support services as well as technical support and training for licensees of the RDK. Most of itaas' approximately 200 employees appear to be based in Atlanta or India, plus some in Canada. It has no Philadelphia office listed among the locations on its website.

Also, a Dublin, Ireland-based company named S3 Group has opened a Philadelphia office to be closer to Comcast and the RDK initiative. The office, located at 1800 John F. Kennedy Blvd, will initially have seven employees, according to the Philadelphia Business Journal. S3 helps manage the RDK code base.

The Reference Design Kit (RDK), originally developed primarily by Comcast, is a preintegrated software stack for set-tops, gateways, and other IP-capable devices. Comcast, through the joint venture, has made an effort to open it up and make it an industry standard. RDK Management says there are now more than 140 RDK licensees, and RDK applications will be on display by several of those at next week's Cable Show in Los Angeles.

The joint venture was formed last year, with Comcast veteran Steve Heeb being named its President and GM.

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