Loss-making French telecom equipment maker Alcatel-Lucent SA will be selling its enterprise telephone systems business

December 19
7:36 PM 2013

French telecom equipment maker Alcatel-Lucent SA has decided to sell its unit that supplies telephone systems to big companies, trade union French Democratic Confederation of Labour (CFDT) said on Thursday.

Several sources told Reuters last month that Alcatel was considering a sale of the corporate telephony unit. The exit of the telephone business is part of Alcatel's "shift" plan which includes 10,000 job cuts, €1 billion cost savings and €1 billion of asset sales.

Alcatel chief executive Michel Combes is aiming to revive the loss-making firm that has struggled against low-cost Asian competitors as well as larger rivals Ericsson and Nokia, the report said.

Reuters, citing a statement by CFDT, said that Combes wants to sell the telephony unit by July 1, 2014. Several scenarios are under review, including a sale to an investment fund or to a Chinese investor. One or more industrial players could also be potential buyers, CFDT added.

The corporate telephone business is what is left of Alcatel's enterprise business after selling call center unit Genesys to private equity firm Permira for $1.5 billion last year. It had tried to sell the business with Genesys, but found no takers, the report said.

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