Light Reading
7:05 AM Forget Alcatel-Lucent – NEC could be the best bet to merge with Nokia Siemens Networks

Matchmaking NSN

Ray Le Maistre
8/2/2012
50%
50%

7:05 AM -- Speculation about a potential merger between Alcatel-Lucent (NYSE: ALU) and Nokia Networks has increased again recently as both vendors try to restructure their way out of trouble. AlcaLu CEO Ben Verwaayen has countered that speculation this week as he discusses his company's current challenges. (See Alcatel-Lucent: Too Little, Too Late?)

But for those interested in NSN's future, you should check out the excellent analysis of potential suitors by Heavy Reading Senior Analyst Patrick Donegan. He argues that of all the possible partners -- including Ericsson AB (Nasdaq: ERIC) and Samsung Corp. -- NEC Corp. (Tokyo: 6701) is the most likely to make a move. There are a number of reasons why that makes sense. (See Who's Going to Buy NSN?.)

Donegan makes a great case for NEC from a macro-economic, cultural, historical and technology perspective. But, digging a bit deeper, there's another reason the NEC/NSN combination makes sense -- it's to do with Service Provider Information Technology (SPIT).

Modern communications equipment vendors can't get by with just great network equipment any more. They need a services (consultancy, systems integration, managed) element, strength in telecom software and IT systems (OSS, BSS, cloud platforms and so on) and global reach and scale.

The strong market leaders, Ericsson and Huawei, have recognized this -- that's why Ericsson acquired Telcordia. NSN also believes this: Its renewed focus is on mobile broadband systems, professional services and Customer Experience Management (CEM), an increasingly important strand in the SPIT sector.

But NSN's broader SPIT story lacks breadth, especially in terms of a broad OSS, BSS and cloud services support systems portfolio. As a major IT/cloud systems vendor, NEC would be a great parent to help NSN be a stronger IT transformation partner to communications service providers (CSPs).

And in building the telecom software side of its portfolio, NEC has shown an appetite for acquisitions. In June 2008 it bought OSS firm NetCracker for US$300 million and subsequently merged it with its existing telecom software assets to create a SPIT giant. Then a few months ago it splashed out $449 million to add billing, customer care and revenue management capabilities to its portfolio by acquiring Convergys Information Management. (See NEC to Buy Convergys Unit for $449M and NEC Shells Out $300M for NetCracker.)

NEC also has a strong mobile backhaul product line that would fill a hole at NSN, which sold its backhaul unit as part of its restructuring process. (See DragonWave to Buy NSN Unit.)

And it's a leading force in one of the most exciting areas of networking development -- software-defined networking (SDN). (See NEC Enhances OpenFlow-based SDN Fabric.)

There are, then, a number of factors that favor a NEC/NSN tie-up. As Donegan points out, such a move would "take a marked break in NEC's corporate culture," but as he also notes, stranger things have happened.

— Ray Le Maistre, International Managing Editor, Light Reading

(13)  | 
Comment  | 
Print  | 
Newest First  |  Oldest First  |  Threaded View
Page 1 / 2   >   >>
exon
50%
50%
exon,
User Rank: Light Beer
12/5/2012 | 5:25:03 PM
re: Matchmaking NSN


and the name is ALNSN? or maybe "bell labs" (seems to be the only thing left standing with some brand quality)....


anyway if you just consider the portfolios, they have many complementary parts, no doubt about that - NSN recent ditching of Juniper makes it more sensible too. but how on earth they are going to organize this monster (size-wise but mainly complexity-wise) and compete?


This could work if the management stays FAR away from Paris, if they dispose whole parts BEFORE they merge (i could think of the services alltogether to make for leaner organizations).


But who is going to engineer the deal? merkel and hollande?

yarn
50%
50%
yarn,
User Rank: Light Sabre
12/5/2012 | 5:25:02 PM
re: Matchmaking NSN


Another merger is the last thing that ALU or NSN needs right now. Management of both NSN and ALU needs to put their entire focus on stabilizing the patient and nursing it back to health.

FastCache
50%
50%
FastCache,
User Rank: Light Beer
12/5/2012 | 5:25:00 PM
re: Matchmaking NSN


Any of these M&A scenarios is likely to result in the accelerated demise of all concerned. Alcatel-Lucent continues to be in denial. Merging with someone else is hardly going to help the process of a turnaround.


Better to exit poorly performing businesses and to focus on true value creating ones.  Customers need to decide who are their strategic suppliers for each part of their network. Subscale players in any technology area cannot serve their customers with the sustained innovation required.

pdonegan67
50%
50%
pdonegan67,
User Rank: Light Sabre
12/5/2012 | 5:24:59 PM
re: Matchmaking NSN


Can't say I agree that any of these scenarios will likely lead to the acclerated demise of the acquirer. NEC and Samsung, for example, have a lot to gain from acquiring NSN's account footprint, and potentially some of their product line too. Neither firm has the scope to aggressively leverage price and financial terms as Huawei has done to break into so many accounts.

pdonegan67
50%
50%
pdonegan67,
User Rank: Light Sabre
12/5/2012 | 5:24:58 PM
re: Matchmaking NSN


Historically I would agree with you but I think Japan's business culture with respect to international M&A may be changing faster than you think.


The barriers to undertaking a huge deal of this kind are lower than they were a couple of years ago and they may be set to go lower still.


That doesn't make NEC a shoe-in for this deal. But it does means they are a much more plausible candidate for this than they would have been just two or three years ago.

paolo.franzoi
50%
50%
paolo.franzoi,
User Rank: Light Beer
12/5/2012 | 5:24:58 PM
re: Matchmaking NSN


At least the bit about culture.  The Japanese are really not big on any acquisitions and large ones are very out of the norm.


I think that breaking up these firms and selling off some pieces seems the right thing.  They don't seem to understand portfolion management at all.


seven


 

paolo.franzoi
50%
50%
paolo.franzoi,
User Rank: Light Beer
12/5/2012 | 5:24:56 PM
re: Matchmaking NSN


 


I would say that it might be so...and NEC would be the last buy that happens.  Imagine what happens at NSN when every senior manager in the company is fired to be replaced by a Japanese manager.  Should be a great sport to watch them wipe out the dirty gaijin.  :)


 


seven


 

pdonegan67
50%
50%
pdonegan67,
User Rank: Light Sabre
12/5/2012 | 5:24:53 PM
re: Matchmaking NSN


Can't agree with you there, I'm afraid. I can't see the bulk of NSN giving Cisco or Juniper anything much besides margin dilution.

allip
50%
50%
allip,
User Rank: Light Beer
12/5/2012 | 5:24:53 PM
re: Matchmaking NSN


NSN might be a good fir both Cisco and Juniper who have been gearing up to enter


the 4G wireless infrastructure market..

Soupafly
50%
50%
Soupafly,
User Rank: Light Sabre
12/5/2012 | 5:24:53 PM
re: Matchmaking NSN


What about Dimension Data?


Are they so outlandish......?

Page 1 / 2   >   >>
More Blogs from EuroBlog
Having taken a breather from its acquisition spree in the US, Zayo could kick-start some infrastructure consolidation action in Europe
Some good news for its Finnish parent – Nokia Siemens Networks is on a margin roll
Telefónica to boost its broadband lines in LatAm with DSL management the from ASSIA
According to the value of Nokia's takeover deal, Nokia Siemens Networks is worth less than $5B
As APAC and North America forge ahead, Europe seems stuck in yesteryear
Flash Poll
From The Founder
It's clear to me that the communications industry is divided into two types of people, and only one is living in the real world.
LRTV Interviews
The New Wave of IP + Optical Integration

11|21|14   |   04:29   |   (7) comments


At the Alcatel-Lucent Technology Symposium, Heavy Reading senior analyst Sterling Perrin talks about how SDN has reshaped the discussion around packet and optical integration.
LRTV Huawei Video Resource Center
Huawei Highlights at BBWF 2014

11|20|14   |   3:40   |   (1) comment


Broadband World Forum is one of the world's largest telecoms, media and technology events with over 7,800 senior executives from across the globe converging on Amsterdam every year to identify the Next Big Thing. BBWF is an exciting place to meet the entire industry under one roof and identify the latest in network innovation, service optimization and customer ...
LRTV Huawei Video Resource Center
How Will BCMS Stimulate Margin for Broadband Operators?

11|19|14   |   6:52   |   (0) comments


In BBWF 2014, Liu Shuqing emphasizes the value of FMC 2.0 based full service experience by throwing light on the BCMS solution. The underlying principle of this innovative technique is to create network robustness and driving network from connection oriented to ACE – BAND oriented infrastructure, in which applications, cloud, and user experiences will be an asset ...
LRTV Huawei Video Resource Center
SingleFAN3.0: Better Connected Experience

11|19|14   |   3:06   |   (1) comment


At the BBWF 2014, David Hu, the VP of Huawei Access Network Product Line, talked about the future of access networks – SingleFAN3.0: faster broadband, wider coverage, and smarter connection.
LRTV Interviews
Basil Alwan Interview: The Road to Cloud

11|19|14   |   09:09   |   (0) comments


Alcatel-Lucent's head of IP and Transport talks about the migration towards a web-like networking environment, the impact of the cloud, SDN and NFV, and the yet-to-be-announced FP4 chip.
LRTV Documentaries
FairPoint Makes a Fair Point About Analytics

11|19|14   |   1:56   |   (1) comment


The US-based communication service provider gets to grips with advanced analytics, tackling data and breaking down the silos within its own business.
LRTV Documentaries
Analytics Lets C Spire Get to Know Subs

11|19|14   |   3:01   |   (2) comments


It's all about the data for US operator C Spire as it uses analytics to personalize its customer service down to individual subscribers.
LRTV Interviews
Nuage Branches Out With SDN: CEO Interview

11|17|14   |   9:32   |   (0) comments


Sunil Khandekar, CEO of Alcatel-Lucent's SDN-focused unit Nuage Networks, talks about the opportunities and challenges of breaking out of the data center into wide-area networks.
Light Reedy
Telecom Analytics Grows Up

11|14|14   |   1:15   |   (4) comments


The big data analytics debate has moved on from a year ago, with some experts suggesting it's no longer a technology challenge.
LRTV Huawei Video Resource Center
Huawei Compass

11|14|14   |   3:17   |   (1) comment


At OpenStack Summit 2014, Shuo Yang, Huawei Principal Cloud Infrastructure Architect introduced Huawei Compass, the software tool for solving customers' problems on the journey of OpenStack Cloud.
LRTV Huawei Video Resource Center
Huawei's Cloud Strategy in European Region

11|14|14   |   2:56   |   (1) comment


At OpenStack Summit 2014, Dr. Gotz, CTO of Huawei IT in European Region introduced Huawei's cloud strategy in European region.
LRTV Huawei Video Resource Center
Huawei's Contribution on OpenStack

11|14|14   |   5:58   |   (0) comments


At OpenStack Summit 2014, Dennis Gu, Huawei Chief Architect of Cloud Computing introduced the relationship between OpenStack and cloud computing, and Huawei's contribution on OpenStack.
Upcoming Live Events
December 2, 2014, New York City
December 3, 2014, New York City
December 8-10, 2014, Reykjavik, Iceland
February 12, 2015, Atlanta, GA
April 14, 2015, New York City, NY
May 6, 2015, McCormick Convention Center, Chicago, IL
May 13-14, 2015, The Westin Peachtree, Atlanta, GA
June 9-10, 2015, Chicago, IL
Infographics
Irish Telecom outlines the rise of VoIP technology, including its adoption within businesses and their perception of its quality.
Hot Topics
Bell Labs Chief Slams 'Toy' Networks
Robert Clark, 11/19/2014
$38.3M: Ain't That a Kik in the SMS
Sarah Reedy, Senior Editor, 11/20/2014
Do You Have a 2020 Vision?
Dennis Mendyk, Vice President of Research, Heavy Reading, 11/21/2014
The New Wave of IP + Optical Integration
Ray Le Maistre, Editor-in-chief, 11/21/2014
Google, AT&T, BT Unite on Network Data Models
Carol Wilson, Editor-at-large, 11/20/2014
Like Us on Facebook
Twitter Feed