ADC Telecommunications (NASDAQ:ADCT) is up today, thanks to a decent quarterly report. The provider of mainly long-haul communications systems saw sales shifting from copper and coaxial cable to fiber-optics and wireless solutions compared to last year, keeping revenues and margins stable overall.

That's good, because consolidation in the telecom industry over the past 12 months has reduced the spending levels of recent merger products like the new AT&T (NYSE:T) and Vodafone (NYSE:VOD), which usually have voracious global appetites. It's remarkable for an infrastructure supplier to thrive in that kind of environment.

CEO Robert Switz made comments that point to a return to normalcy, and stressed his company's strong sales outside North America. Nearly 38% of ADC's sales happen in places like Europe and Asia these days, giving it some immunity to localized economic slumps.

So what we have here is a worldwide systems provider treading water while its target market sorts itself out. ADC was hit hard by the dot-com crash and the end of enthusiastic spending on networks without content. Now that the third world builds out communications networks and more fortunate markets catch a case of online video addiction, the networks are growing again -- and so should infrastructure builders like ADC.

The stock price may be up 47% over the last year, but it's down 93% from its bubbly peak in 2001. ADC has an impressive roster of dependable customers, including all of the biggest U.S. telecoms -- AT&T, Sprint-Nextel (NYSE:S), Verizon (NYSE:VZ), and so forth -- and money center banks like Citigroup (NYSE:C) and Morgan Stanley (NYSE:MS) that need their own private networks for secure transactions in virtual cash.

In other words, there should be plenty of growth still ahead once all the consolidation shakes out, and we're a long ways off from the pie-in-the-sky valuations of old. Keep an eye on ADC, in case some short-term stumble brings about a bargain buy.

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Fool contributor Anders Bylund holds no position in any of the companies discussed here. You can check out Anders' holdings if you like, and Foolish disclosure always gives you a clear signal.