lucent

Alcatel-Lucent

Alcatel-Lucent is one of the world's biggest industry players in telecommunications that provides hardware, software, and services to Service Providers, Enterprises and Industry & Public Sector customers all over the globe. The company is incorporated in France and has its headquarters at rue de la Boétie in Paris. The company does business in more than 130 countries, with almost equal sales distribution coming from both its European and North American regions, and an additional third of its channel located elsewhere in the world. Alcatel-Lucent was formed after Alcatel merged with Lucent Technologies on December 1, 2006.

History

Alcatel has a long history beginning in 1898 with the founding of Compagnie Générale d'Electricité (CGE). The original home of the company was the Alsace region and it still maintains R&D operations in the Strasbourg area. The current name, "Alcatel", comes from the acquisition in 1968 of Société Alsacienne de Constructions Atomiques, de Télécommunications et d' Electronique

In 1991 CGE changed its name to Alcatel Alsthom, and in 1998 to Alcatel .

There were a number of mergers and acquisitions, as well as divestments since 1898. To understand the current company and its focus on telecommunications, the most important were the acquisition of the European telecommunications activities of ITT in 1986. The combined companies were called Alcatel Alsthom. Alcatel maintains significant R&D presence in France (Paris region, Brittany, South of France), Antwerp (Belgium), at the former ITT operations there (Bell Telephone), in Stuttgart (Germany), in Italy (Vimercate, Genoa, Rieti, Battipaglia), in India (Gurgaon, NOIDA and Chennai), since 2000 in Shanghai (China) and since 2005 in Saint-Petersburg (Russia).

Since 1990, various North American companies were acquired – Spatial Wireless, Rockwell Technologies, DSC Communications, Xylan, Packet Engines, Assured Access, Newbridge, iMagicTV, TiMetra, and eDial – giving Alcatel a strong U.S. and Canadian presence. Alcatel has its North American headquarters in Plano, Texas, and R&D operations in Ottawa, Mountain View, California, Petaluma, California, Saint John, New Brunswick, Calabasas, California, Murray, Utah ,and Raleigh, North Carolina.

Early in 2006, Alcatel setup a new joint venture with TCL of China forming a new mobile business, TCL and Alcatel Mobile Phones Limited (TAMP).

On October 7, 2008, Alcatel-Lucent completed its acquisition of Motive Inc., a publicly traded service automation software company.

Thales deal

On April 6, 2006, Alcatel announced it would swap its shares of Alcatel Alenia Space and Telespazio for €673 million and a 12.1% stake of Thales Group (increasing its share to 21.6%).

Areas of business

Alcatel was mostly well known for its DSL multiplexers, used for high-speed Internet access over ADSL and VDSL, whereas Lucent was well-known for its Class 4 and 5 voice switches (Central Office) and its optical products. Alcatel had over 40% of the world DSLAM market in 2007, with more than 143 million lines shipped and has been evolving this from an ATM-backhauled device to an IP-backhauled device. It has a partnership with Microsoft as of 2004 to provide IPTV services via its TPSDA (Triple Play Services Delivery Architecture) over DSL and using its 7x50 VPLS/MPLS routers and switches to service providers such as AT&T in the United States. It is also a leading provider of optical transmission equipment, especially for submarine communications cable. Genesys, a U.S. subsidiary, is a leading provider of call centre software which operates both with Alcatel-Lucent equipment and 3rd-party equipment. The company is generally organized into carrier, enterprise and services business groups.

Alcatel-Lucent is also a world leader in point-to-point microwave radios and wireless transmission; with over 50 years expertise and over 17% of the global market share in 2005. It has a field-proven experience in deploying and managing wireless transmission networks and 2G, 2.5G, and 3G mobile backhauling.

Alcatel-Lucent has several notable non-carrier-based businesses. It has a Industries & Public Sector division that provides communication solutions for railway and mass transit operators, such as country-wide optical networks in United Kingdom, Belgium, Switzerland, city underground networks in Paris, Berlin, Beijing, Shanghai, etc.

Merger between Alcatel and Lucent Technologies

On April 2, 2006, Alcatel and Lucent Technologies announced a merger. The combined company, Alcatel-Lucent, was expected to have revenues of approximately $25 billion U.S. based on 2005 calendar results.

The merger was completed on December 1, 2006.

On February 8, 2008, Alcatel-Lucent posting a $3.74 billion fourth-quarter loss and canceled its 2007 dividend, after taking a writedown of more than $3 billion on its U.S. wireless business. Analysts suggested that Alcatel shareholders had overpaid for Lucent. Continued poor results in 2008 led to the ouster of chairman Serge Tchuruk and CEO Patricia Russo.

Organization

Offices

  • Global executive office:
  • Alcatel-Lucent has two regional groups:
    • Asia Pacific and Europe, Middle East and Africa
    • Americas

Business groups

  • Carrier
  • Enterprise
  • Services

Research

  • Bell Labs, a combination of Lucent Technologies's Bell Labs and Alcatel's Research & Innovation

Pending acquisitions

On March 10, 2008, Alcatel-Lucent announced they will acquire privately held consulting firm Reachview Technologies.

Lawsuits

Alcatel-Lucent v. Microsoft

Lucent Technologies filed suit against Gateway and Dell, claiming they had violated patents on MP3, MPEG and other technologies developed by Bell Labs, a division of predecessor company American Telephone & Telegraph. Microsoft voluntarily joined the lawsuit in April 2003, and Alcatel was added after it acquired Lucent. The case, involving a number of patents, is pending in U.S. District Court in San Diego, California.

The first part of the case involved two audio coding patents that Alcatel-Lucent claimed were infringed by Microsoft's Windows Media Player application. Alcatel-Lucent won the trial and $1.52 Billion in damages, but the Judge granted Microsoft's motion for judgment and new trial., Alcatel-Lucent says it will appeal.

In the second part of the case, the Judge ruled that Microsoft had not violated Alcatel-Lucent's patents relating to speech recognition and the case was therefore dismissed before going to trial. Alcatel-Lucent intends to appeal.

The third part of the case involves several user interface-related patents, is scheduled to begin on May 21.

Additional patent infringement cases, some filed by Microsoft and some filed by Alcatel-Lucent, are pending across the U.S..

Alcatel problems and shortcomings

Alcatel is seriously questioned in Costa Rica due to bribes to high ranking government officials particularly in the Instituto Costarricense de Electricidad (ICE) -the Costa Rican Institute of Electricity- to persuade them to purchase the country's cellular telephone network from them. The issue is still outstanding in Costa Rica's highest courts and also in United States courts because of violation of the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act (FCPA). Also, there are other issues standing due to the low quality of the equipment and signal of the mentioned equipment, thus the contract was ceased and a US $76 million fine is being charged, along with the possibility of forbidding them to participate in future public contracts in Costa Rica.

In mid-2008, Alcatel's contact for maintenance of the Costa Rican GSM network was revoked by ICE due to repeated failure of Alcatel to meet its contractual obligations. The network has never performed to specification.

Corporate image

The logo of the company was designed by the Madrid office of Landor Associates and the corporate image and advertising is managed by the Paris-based advertising agency, Euro RSCG.

The logo vaguely represents A and L which stand for Alcatel and Lucent and also symbolizes infinity. According to their website, "It symbolizes infinity. It implies movement. Its colour combines the stability of blue with the energy of red".

See also

References

External links

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