Lucatel Staff Face Wage Worries
Staff have been told that their salaries and employee benefits are safe post-merger, but only until the end of 2007. The document -- a transcript of an employee/management question-and-answer session about the impact of the merger -- notes that: "The merger agreement provides that the combined company will maintain the salaries and aggregate employee benefit levels (other than benefits under equity-based plans) provided to Lucent and Alcatel employees immediately before the merger at least through December 31, 2007."
Ominously, though, the official response adds: "We are unable to speculate on what might happen further down the road."
With the merger -- creating a monster vendor we're calling "Lucatel" until an official name is revealed -- set to complete any time between October 2006 and April 2007, staff retained by the new giant will have a maximum of 15 months' wages and benefits security. (See Lucatel: Full Steam Ahead.)
The Q&A session also reveals that the combined company will "maintain all of Lucent's and Alcatel's severance plans, programs, and policies for at least two years after the merger, other than for those employees whose employment is governed by a collective bargaining or similar agreement."
The new revelations will create additional pressure particularly for Lucent staff, who are already concerned that they will bear the brunt of the planned 8,800 redundancies. Between them, Alcatel and Lucent have about 88,000 employees, and they expect the merger to result in a 10 percent headcount reduction. (See Lucatel: French Staff Not Safe and Alcatel/Lucent: No Job Cut Clarity Yet.)
— Ray Le Maistre, International News Editor, Light Reading