Avaya completes US$900m acquisition of Nortel

21 Dec 2009

Business communications technology giant Avaya has completed its US$900m acquisition of troubled Canadian networking equipment player Nortel Enterprise Solutions (NES).

Nortel is a significant employer in Ireland with more than 300 workers in Galway and close to 500 near Belfast. At its peak the Northern Ireland business employed over 2,000 people. Nortel has maintained a base in Galway fo the past 36 years.

In January Nortel filed for bankruptcy and in Septembr saw its Q4 revenues drop by 15pc to US$2.72bn as market demand for its products fell in the face of the ongoing global recession.

Avaya is a key player in the Irish unified communications market and employs 200 people in Sandyford, Dublin, where it has a major R&D operation. Avaya bought Irish technology firm Spectel in 2004 for US$103m.

Avaya said the acquisition of NES will boost its strategic position in the business communications market, giving it added scale, resources and expertise.

“The completion of this acquisition represents another major step in Avaya’s evolution and growth in the communications industry,” said Kevin Kennedy, president and CEO, Avaya.

“Avaya and Nortel Enterprise Solutions share a common vision for the future of business communications. By combining our complementary technology portfolios, deep industry specific domain expertise, sales channels and customer bases, the new Avaya will redefine business communications and help customers to reduce costs, simplify operations and increase their business agility,” Kennedy said.

As a result of the acquisition, Avaya will benefit from an expanded partner ecosystem, a broader portfolio, an enhanced customer base, and a greater ability to compete globally.

The company said it will extend relationships with system integrators and service providers who serve the enterprise market.

Approximately 6,000 NES employees have joined Avaya, including 25 top managers. Joel Hackney, previously president, Nortel Enterprise Solutions, joins the Avaya Executive Committee as senior vice president and president, Avaya Government Solutions and Data.

 “In addition to great technology and outstanding customer relationship, NES brings talented employees in sales, systems engineering, services, marketing and more,” said Kennedy.

“We believe our ability to innovate and develop solutions for customers to help them transform their businesses will continue to accelerate.”

Avaya said it will reveal its new product portfolio and roadmap within the next month.

By John Kennedy


John Kennedy is a journalist who served as editor of Silicon Republic for 17 years