The company was founded in 1983 by Robert Thompson and is one of several fiber optics related firms in the Roanoke area that were established by former employees of ITT's facility in Roanoke County, Virginia. The company expanded steadily in the 1980's. The company purchased Robert Thompson's majority interest in a leveraged buyout in June 1989, leaving Robert Kopstein as the sole stockholder. The company continued to expand during the 1990's. OCCF made a partial initial public offering on April 2, 1996, during the early stages of the telecommunications and dot com bubbles. 670,000 shares, representing 7% of the company, were sold for $10. The stock soon soared to over $100 per share before settling around $50 per share. The company was profiled by CNBC and financial industry publications.
Kopstein's shares had a value of over one billion dollars at the stock's peak. He pledged much of his 93% ownership of the company as collateral for margin loans to acquire other stocks. After the collapse of the dot com bubble in 2000 and 2001, the margin loan backers placed calls which compelled Kopstein to liquidate a large portion of his OCCF stock holdings. Combined with the weakness of the telecommunications sector, the stock price of OCCF fell to around $1 ($6 after considering splits since the IPO). Kopstein's tenure as President and CEO ended in late 2001.
The new management stabilized the company during the recovery of the telecommunications sector in the mid 2000's. OCCF houses both its offices and manufacturing plant in a modern facility at the Valleypointe business park in Roanoke County near Roanoke Regional Airport. OCCF is 2000 certified. Lucent and Corning are the company's primary competitors.
On August 15, 2006, Superior Essex, a large wire and cable manufacturer based in Atlanta, Georgia, offered to buy Optical Cable for about $36 million, or $6 per outstanding share, in cash. This proposal represents Superior Essex's second attempt to acquire the company.
On June 2, 2008, Optical Cable Corporation acquired Superior Modular Products (SMP Data Communications) to add the connectivity products it needed to its product offerings. SMP Data Communications will become a wholly owned subsidiary of Optical Cable Corporation.
Optical Cable Corporation: solid connections at the speed of light. (Fiberoptic Product News[TM]).(Company Profile)
Dec 01, 2002; Optical Cable Corporation was founded in 1983. The founders were responsible for performing the government-funded fiber optic...