Ottawa approves Cienas $769M purchase of Nortels Ethernet business

The Canadian Press ~ The News
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OTTAWA - The $769-million bid by U.S.-based Ciena Corp (Nasdaq:CIEN) for Nortel Network's Metro Ethernet Networks division has been given the stamp of approval by federal Industry Minister Tony Clement.
Clement said in a news release Tuesday that he was satisfied the investment is likely to be of net benefit to Canada.
"Ciena's investment will ensure the continued operation and substantial research and development presence of the optical and carrier Ethernet portions of Nortel's MEN business," Clement said.
He said Ciena is committed to making Canada a focal centre for its global research and development operations, to maintain significant technology investment in Canada and to maintain a significant proportion of the current employee population in Canada.
"In short, this investment will maintain jobs, R&D activity and corporate leadership in Canada," Clement said.
Under the Investment Canada Act, a federal review is required any time a Canadian company with assets of more than $312 million is purchased by a foreign entity.
Nortel, formerly Canada's technology leader, has been under court supervised bankruptcy restructuring since the start of 2009.
Since then, the company has auctioned off most of its larger divisions, including the deal with Ciena, in an attempt to pay back debtholders.
Just before Christmas, the company announced it had accepted a so-called "stalking-horse" bid of US282 million from Genband Inc., for its carrier voice-over-Internet protocol and application solutions business.
The bid sets a floor price for the assets at an auction supervised by bankruptcy courts.

Organizations: Ciena Corp, Nortel, Metro Ethernet Networks division Genband

Geographic location: Canada, Ottawa, U.S.

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