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Euronews: AlcaLu Looks to Profit from Patents

Paul Rainford

Alcatel-Lucent (NYSE: ALU), Telecom Italia (TIM) and OTE S.A. proffer something for the weekend in Friday's grab-bag of EMEA headlines.

  • Alcatel-Lucent has created a new business unit dedicated to making money out of the vendor's massive patents portfolio. The unit will be led by Craig Thompson, an experienced lawyer who is leaving his role as vice president of legal and intellectual property affairs at Nokia Corp. (NYSE: NOK) to take up his new challenge. The move forms part of AlcaLu's wider rejuvenation strategy, dubbed The Performance Program, which was announced in September. (See Alcatel-Lucent Sharpens Its Focus and Euronews: AlcaLu Needs to Shed 10,000 More.)

  • Tough economic conditions on its home soil were largely responsible for a 3 percent year-on-year drop in nine-month EBITDA (earnings before interest, tax, depreciation and amortization) at Telecom Italia, down to €8.86 billion (US$11.26 billion).

  • In strife-torn Greece, no-holds-barred cost-cutting saw incumbent OTE post a year-on-year 4 percent increase in third-quarter net income, despite revenues slumping by more than 10 percent to €1.17 billion ($1.48 billion). Personnel expenses were down a chunky 9.9 percent on the year-ago period.

  • The soaraway success of Safaricom Ltd. 's mobile money transfer service was key to the Kenyan operator's 113 percent leap in pre-tax profits to 11.5 billion shillings ($134.66 million), according to Reuters. Safaricom is 40 percent owned by U.K.-based Vodafone Group plc (NYSE: VOD).

    — Paul Rainford, Assistant Editor, Europe, Light Reading

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