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3G/HSPA

How NSN Is Funding Its Nortel Bid

Tucked away in the Nokia Networks media briefing about its impending Nortel Networks Ltd. wireless assets acquisition were details about how it's funding the $650 million bid. (See NSN Picks at Nortel's Mobile Bones and All the Latest Nortel & Nokia Siemens News & Analysis.)

And the details are pretty interesting.

It's been widely reported, including here on Light Reading, that Export Development Canada (EDC) has backed NSN's bid with a $300 million loan, as the Finnish/German joint venture is committed to continuing next-generation wireless developments in Ottawa, and about 800 Canadian staff are set to join NSN from Nortel as part of the overall deal. (See Richard Lowe, President of Carrier Networks, Nortel and Will Others Bid for Nortel's Wireless Assets? )

But what about the other $350 million?

Well, $100 million comes from another loan, this time from Nordic bank Nordea, and the rest from available cash and assets.

Underpinning the deal, though, is a new credit facility that first came to light back in April. At that time it was a proposed €1.5 billion ($2.1 billion) line of credit from multiple banks that, we suggested, might be linked to some Nortel M&A action. (See Nortel M&A Plot Thickens.)

That three-year credit facility, organized by Nordea and French bank BNP Paribas , is now in place but was oversubscribed, so it is now a €2 billion ($2.8 billion) credit line involving 21 banks.

That leaves NSN with a lot of ammunition should it wish to make further strategic purchases. The vendor says it isn't involved in any further Nortel asset purchase deals at present, but its name has been linked to Nortel carrier VoIP and Metro Ethernet Networks (optical and Ethernet) assets, though it's most certainly not alone in that respect. (See Who's Dialing In for Nortel's VoIP Assets? and Is Ciena Ogling MEN? )

And who knows? It may even need to increase its bid for the CDMA and LTE access assets if any rivals bid against it. (See Will Others Bid for Nortel's Wireless Assets? )

Nokia Siemens Nortel Networks, anyone?

— Ray Le Maistre, International News Editor, Light Reading

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