The New York Times is reporting this morning that sources are indicating that Lucent Technologies, the telecommunications equipment manufacturer spun off from AT&T during the original 1984 court-ordered divestiture, is close to reaching a deal to be acquired by French telecom company Alcatel. The price tag on the table is reportedly $12.6 billion.
After several years of mergers on a huge scale among telephone companies – local, long-distance and wireless – a deal for Lucent would be the first big step toward a shakeout among the companies that make the equipment for the phone service providers.
The prospect of a big trans-Atlantic deal comes at a time when foreign takeovers have been political flashpoints in both Washington and Paris. A Dubai company’s acquisition of some United States port terminals created an uproar in Congress, while the French government has sought to thwart cross-border takeovers in energy and pharmaceuticals.
(The New York Times)