Is Nortel Prepping a Major Sale?
The Wall Street Journal reported late Wednesday that Nortel is in talks to sell its enterprise and wireless business units, which accounted for a combined $6.7 billion in sales in 2008, the publication said.
Ever since Nortel filed for its restructuring on January 14 -- a plan that included a bankruptcy filing in the United States -- some analysts have suggested the wireless division would make an attractive purchase for a rival.
The report suggests Nokia Networks might be a potential bidder for Nortel's wireless assets.
The enterprise division and the optical business -- which includes well-regarded 40-Gbit/s operations -- have also been mentioned as selloff candidates. (See Should Nortel Be Sold for Parts?, Nortel Files for Bankruptcy Protection, and Nortel Rolls On With 40-Gig.)
The WSJ listed Avaya Inc. and Siemens Enterprise Communications -- a joint venture of Siemens AG (NYSE: SI; Frankfurt: SIE) and private equity firm Gores Group LLC -- as being interested in the enterprise unit.
Nortel's already sold off its Layers 4 through 7 business -- the former Alteon Networks -- to Radware Ltd. (Nasdaq: RDWR). It tried putting the Metro Ethernet Networks (MEN) division, which includes that 40-Gbit/s franchise, up for sale in September, but drew no takers. (See Nortel to Sell Carrier Ethernet, Optical Biz, Nortel to Hold MEN, and Nortel to Offload Data Gear to Radware.)
— Craig Matsumoto, West Coast Editor, Light Reading