Optical/IP Networks

Russo: Lucent's Getting Steady

HANNOVER, Germany –- CeBIT 2003 –- Lucent Technologies Inc. is headed for more stable days with some new contracts and a more predictable carrier environment, said Lucent CEO Patricia Russo today, here at the CeBIT tradeshow.

The excess network capacity built in the late 1990s and 2000 is "working its way out, thanks to increasing voice and data usage, and the market will recover slowly as carriers find they have to start spending again," she said.

Russo did offer some caution, outlining the declining capex of the world's carriers (down from $310 billion in 2000 to $205 billion in 2002) and pointing out that the market is likely to shrink further. "But there are signs of stabilization, and Lucent has retrenched, resized and redesigned itself" to be ready for any upturn, she said.

In an effort to win new business while the market continues to shrink, Russo is keen to promote her company as a specialist provider of support services and network software to carriers. "Multivendor systems integration, maintenance, and support services to operators was worth $2.7 billion to Lucent in 2002, but this market is worth about $44 billion in total. I expect services to account for an increasingly large proportion of our revenues in the future. It is an attractive market to target because it is so fragmented; carriers are increasingly keen to outsource in areas they weren't just two years ago; and we have a good story to tell in offering multivendor support."

As coincidence would have it, Lucent today announced that German Wunderkarrier Deutsche Telekom AG (NYSE: DT) is to deploy its Navis iOperations OneVision software. While that may sound like a cure for a lazy left eye, it actually "allows the centralized management of a multivendor optical network," said Russo, thereby cutting costs and the easing the efforts required of carrier network management teams.

She also trumpeted Lucent's heavy involvement in Telekom's new Ethernet-over-SDH service for corporates that was announced here today, so making the German carrier something of a shop window for Lucent's talents in Europe.

Indeed, Lucent listed 12 deals in Europe in total, worth up to $220 million altogether (see Lucent Scores Big in Europe).

While declaring herself unable to comment on Lucent money matters at present because the company is in its quiet period leading up to its next financial statement on April 22, Russo managed a hearty guffaw when asked about industry consolidation and the possibility that Lucent could be acquired by LM Ericsson (Nasdaq: ERICY). "Ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha!" she bellowed. "There are a lot of rumors about, but I couldn't speculate on Lucent or any other individual companies. What I will say is that a great deal of consolidation has already taken place, as a lot of companies have disappeared or gone into Chapter 11. There has been a huge shakeout."

She also declined to comment specifically on Lucent's relationship with Cisco Systems Inc. (Nasdaq: CSCO) (see Lucent & Cisco: Together at Last), though she confirmed that Lucent would partner "wherever we have a product void. There is value in having selective partnerships if they add value to our customers. It's all about delivering solutions to carriers."

Light Reading's Founding Editor, Peter Heywood, will be hosting two panel discussions at CeBIT: CeBIT Debate: MPLS and QOS on Wednesday, March 12; and CeBIT Debate: ATM Versus Ethernet on Thursday, March 13.

— Ray Le Maistre, European Editor, Unstrung

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donethat 12/5/2012 | 12:28:29 AM
re: Russo: Lucent's Getting Steady It's interesting to note that LR proves (once again) the old adage that women and minorities must be twice as good as white males to achieve the same degree of success. Fiorina and Russo have to continuously put up with the sour grapes of wannabe white males that haven't made it, and therefore take out there frustration by commenting on the physical appearance of top female executives. If there are valid negative comments to make about these women, (and believe me, I totally agree that there are) then make them...but it's been a long time since I've heard any comments about fat, balding, crude, etc. white male CEOs...which makes my point.
To the OOW (out of work) males (and other females that make the same kind of comments to "fit in") that need to lash out at women in power (yeah, I know...at least you used to be able to feel superior to women) I say..."GET A LIFE". I have two daughters in technical fields, and they are far superior to many, many engineers that I supervised as a VP at Lucent before I left 8 years ago.
rafaelg 12/5/2012 | 12:28:29 AM
re: Russo: Lucent's Getting Steady Got a chuckle...
salessnake 12/5/2012 | 12:28:28 AM
re: Russo: Lucent's Getting Steady Well- I don't know what you have been reading or watching on TV for the past few years, but the white male is basically the butt every joke out there! I would say white males are the only group that is "fair game" to make fun at without a backlash (like yours).

So-if white males are "expected" to get a life, I respond to you with "get a thicker skin".

The great white salessnake.

Snape 12/5/2012 | 12:28:28 AM
re: Russo: Lucent's Getting Steady Lucent execs, in general, are screamingly mediocre.

The women of lucent especially so as witnessed by Russo and Davidson. Jury is still out on Fiorina.

None of them have vision, other than how to line their pockets for as long as possible.

Not having been there in eight years, you need to put away your soap box.

They are every bit as incompetant as their male counterparts. The hairdo just makes it funnier.
salessnake 12/5/2012 | 12:28:26 AM
re: Russo: Lucent's Getting Steady Now-that was a post! Could not have said it better myself
dodo 12/5/2012 | 12:28:25 AM
re: Russo: Lucent's Getting Steady Jimmy


If you follow LR on a daily basis, you will remember that they did poke fun at the other Russo, I mean Carl Russo.

So they don't practice discrimination, except that this current Russo is in the line of fire:-)
jimmy 12/5/2012 | 12:28:25 AM
re: Russo: Lucent's Getting Steady Did lightreading make fun of Greg Mumfords glasses (scuba mask) or Volpi's bad hair (Carrot top)? No they did not. donethat is correct. Lightreading is stuck in 1970.
lite-brite 12/5/2012 | 12:28:24 AM
re: Russo: Lucent's Getting Steady Did anyone make fun of Bill Gates's geeky...oh, yeah:-)
happy_go_lucky 12/5/2012 | 12:28:18 AM
re: Russo: Lucent's Getting Steady What are you talking about, the hairdo is great it static just like her vision, like a horse.
BillyWood 12/5/2012 | 12:28:16 AM
re: Russo: Lucent's Getting Steady You really shouldn't mock Pat's hair do. I was always taught that you shouldn't make fun of traits that the person can't change.

Besides, that hairdo could save her life one day if she were in a plane crash. Remember the Packer's fan who donned his chessehead before the impact of his Cesna and lived to tell about it.

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