Nortel's Side Effect
Bookham, which owns what used to be Nortel's optical components division, got 18 percent of its revenues from Nortel in the second and third quarters last year. That made Nortel its top customer, although it's a better situation than the days when Bookham completely lived or died on what Nortel did. (Here's some nostalgia from 2005.)
What's best for Bookham, of course, is for Nortel's optical business to live on. Nortel's built up a decent franchise in 40-Gbit/s technology. (See Nortel Rolls On With 40-Gig.) But, even though Nortel says day-to-day activity will continue as normal, the distraction of bankruptcy could give rivals time to catch up.
(For what it's worth, Huawei Technologies Co. Ltd. was Bookham's No. 2 customer in the September quarter.)
Of course, Nortel's filing is a difficult moment for Canada's high-tech community. I'm sure you've all Googled for further reading on the bankruptcy, or maybe you're just staring at the monotonous Twitter flow of Nortel messages.
But in case you're looking for even more: The All About Nortel blog, written by a former tech reporter, has some brief thoughts, and it points to today's Globe and Mail analysis of whether Mike Z. had a fair shot at turning Nortel around.
— Craig Matsumoto, West Coast Editor, Light Reading